The Solaris 10 zones (also known as Solaris containers) feature provides a means of creating virtualized operating system environments within an instance of Solaris OS. This allows one or more processes to run in isolation from other activities on the host. For example, a process running in a zone will only be able to send signals to other processes in the same zone, regardless of user ID and other credential information.
Every Solaris 10 host contains a single global zone. The global zone is both the default zone for the host and the zone used for system-wide administrative control. All processes run in the global zone if no non-global zones are created by the global administrator. Some Java ES components, such as Sun Cluster software can only be installed in the global zone.
A non-global zone can be thought of as a box. One or more applications can run in this box without interacting with the rest of the host. Each non-global zone has what appears to be its own instance of an installed Solaris 10 operating system with configuration and other information unique to that non-global zone. The default configuration for a non-global zone is to share portions of its file system with the global zone (as a read-only loopback file system mount). For Java ES, all non-global zones must be created as “whole root” zones, meaning that there are no inherited file systems.
The following list describes the level of Java ES zones support for this release of Java ES:
Java ES can be installed in the Global zone when non-global zones already exist.
Non-global zones can be created after Java ES is installed in the global zone.
Java ES can be installed in a whole root non-global zone even if another Java ES installation is already installed in the global zone.
Installing Java ES into the default sparse root non-global zone is not supported. The Java ES installer cannot proceed if a sparse root file system is encountered.
Java ES can be installed in the global zone even when Java ES has already been installed in the whole root non-global zone.