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Oracle Solaris Administration: Oracle Solaris Zones, Oracle Solaris 10 Zones, and Resource Management     Oracle Solaris 11 Information Library
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Part I Oracle Solaris Resource Management

1.  Introduction to Resource Management

2.  Projects and Tasks (Overview)

3.  Administering Projects and Tasks

4.  Extended Accounting (Overview)

5.  Administering Extended Accounting (Tasks)

6.  Resource Controls (Overview)

7.  Administering Resource Controls (Tasks)

8.  Fair Share Scheduler (Overview)

9.  Administering the Fair Share Scheduler (Tasks)

10.  Physical Memory Control Using the Resource Capping Daemon (Overview)

11.  Administering the Resource Capping Daemon (Tasks)

12.  Resource Pools (Overview)

13.  Creating and Administering Resource Pools (Tasks)

14.  Resource Management Configuration Example

Part II Oracle Solaris Zones

15.  Introduction to Oracle Solaris Zones

16.  Non-Global Zone Configuration (Overview)

About Resources in Zones

Using Rights Profiles and Roles in Zone Administration

Pre-Installation Configuration Process

Zone Components

Zone Name and Path

Zone Autoboot

file-mac-profile Property for Read-Only Root Zone

admin Resource

Resource Pool Association

dedicated-cpu Resource

capped-cpu Resource

Scheduling Class

Physical Memory Control and the capped-memory Resource

Zone Network Interfaces

About Data-Links

Shared-IP Non-Global Zones

Exclusive-IP Non-Global Zones

Security Differences Between Shared-IP and Exclusive-IP Non-Global Zones

Using Shared-IP and Exclusive-IP Non-Global Zones at the Same Time

File Systems Mounted in Zones

Host ID in Zones

Configured Devices in Zones

Disk Format Support in Non-Global Zones

Setting Zone-Wide Resource Controls

Configurable Privileges

Including a Comment for a Zone

Using the zonecfg Command

zonecfg Modes

zonecfg Interactive Mode

zonecfg Command-File Mode

Zone Configuration Data

Resource Types and Properties

Resource Type Properties

Tecla Command-Line Editing Library

17.  Planning and Configuring Non-Global Zones (Tasks)

18.  About Installing, Shutting Down, Halting, Uninstalling, and Cloning Non-Global Zones (Overview)

19.  Installing, Booting, Shutting Down, Halting, Uninstalling, and Cloning Non-Global Zones (Tasks)

20.  Non-Global Zone Login (Overview)

21.  Logging In to Non-Global Zones (Tasks)

22.  About Zone Migrations and the zonep2vchk Tool

23.  Migrating Oracle Solaris Systems and Migrating Non-Global Zones (Tasks)

24.  About Automatic Installation and Packages on an Oracle Solaris 11 System With Zones Installed

25.  Oracle Solaris Zones Administration (Overview)

26.  Administering Oracle Solaris Zones (Tasks)

27.  Configuring and Administering Immutable Zones

28.  Troubleshooting Miscellaneous Oracle Solaris Zones Problems

Part III Oracle Solaris 10 Zones

29.  Introduction to Oracle Solaris 10 Zones

30.  Assessing an Oracle Solaris 10 System and Creating an Archive

31.  (Optional) Migrating an Oracle Solaris 10 native Non-Global Zone Into an Oracle Solaris 10 Zone

32.  Configuring the solaris10 Branded Zone

33.  Installing the solaris10 Branded Zone

34.  Booting a Zone, Logging in, and Zone Migration



Zone Configuration Data

Zone configuration data consists of two kinds of entities: resources and properties. Each resource has a type, and each resource can also have a set of one or more properties. The properties have names and values. The set of properties is dependent on the resource type.

The only required properties are zonename and zonepath.

Resource Types and Properties

The resource and property types are described as follows:


The name of the zone. The following rules apply to zone names:

  • Each zone must have a unique name.

  • A zone name is case-sensitive.

  • A zone name must begin with an alphanumeric character.

    The name can contain alphanumeric characters, underbars (_), hyphens (-), and periods (.).

  • The name cannot be longer than 63 characters.

  • The name global and all names beginning with SYS are reserved and cannot be used.


The zonepath property specifies the path under which the zone will be installed. Each zone has a path to its root directory that is relative to the global zone's root directory. At installation time, the global zone directory is required to have restricted visibility. The zone path must be owned by root with the mode 700. If the zone path does not exist, it will be automatically created during installation. If the permissions are incorrect, they will be automatically corrected.

The non-global zone's root path is one level lower. The zone's root directory has the same ownership and permissions as the root directory (/) in the global zone. The zone directory must be owned by root with the mode 755. This hierarchy ensures that unprivileged users in the global zone are prevented from traversing a non-global zone's file system.

The zone must reside on a ZFS dataset. The ZFS dataset is created automatically when the zone is installed or attached. If a ZFS dataset cannot be created, the zone will not install or attach.

zonecfg zonepath
Root of the zone

See Traversing File Systems for more information.

Note - You can move a zone to another location on the same system by specifying a new, full zonepath with the move subcommand of zoneadm. See Moving a Non-Global Zone for instructions.


If this property is set to true, the zone is automatically booted when the global zone is booted. It is set to false by default. Note that if the zones service svc:/system/zones:default is disabled, the zone will not automatically boot, regardless of the setting of this property. You can enable the zones service with the svcadm command described in the svcadm(1M) man page:

global# svcadm enable zones

See Zones Packaging Overview for information on this setting during pkg update.


This property is used to set a boot argument for the zone. The boot argument is applied unless overridden by the reboot, zoneadm boot, or zoneadm reboot commands. See Zone Boot Arguments.


This property is used to associate the zone with a resource pool on the system. Multiple zones can share the resources of one pool. Also see dedicated-cpu Resource.


This property is used to specify a privilege mask other than the default. See Privileges in a Non-Global Zone.

Privileges are added by specifying the privilege name, with or without the leading priv_. Privileges are excluded by preceding the name with a dash (-) or an exclamation mark (!). The privilege values are separated by commas and placed within quotation marks ().

As described in priv_str_to_set(3C), the special privilege sets of none, all, and basic expand to their normal definitions. Because zone configuration takes place from the global zone, the special privilege set zone cannot be used. Because a common use is to alter the default privilege set by adding or removing certain privileges, the special set default maps to the default set of privileges. When default appears at the beginning of the limitpriv property, it expands to the default set.

The following entry adds the ability to use DTrace programs that only require the dtrace_proc and dtrace_user privileges in the zone:

global# zonecfg -z userzone
zonecfg:userzone> set limitpriv="default,dtrace_proc,dtrace_user"

If the zone's privilege set contains a disallowed privilege, is missing a required privilege, or includes an unknown privilege, an attempt to verify, ready, or boot the zone will fail with an error message.


This property sets the scheduling class for the zone. See Scheduling Class for additional information and tips.


This property is required to be set for all non-global zones. See Exclusive-IP Non-Global Zones, Shared-IP Non-Global Zones, and How to Configure the Zone.


This resource dedicates a subset of the system's processors to the zone while it is running. The dedicated-cpu resource provides limits for ncpus and, optionally, importance. For more information, see dedicated-cpu Resource.


This resource sets a limit on the amount of CPU resources that can be consumed by the zone while it is running. The capped-cpu resource provides a limit for ncpus. For more information, see capped-cpu Resource.


This resource groups the properties used when capping memory for the zone. The capped-memory resource provides limits for physical, swap, and locked memory. At least one of these properties must be specified. To use the capped-memory resource, the service/resource-cap package must be installed in the global zone.


The anet resource automatically creates a temporary VNIC interface for the exclusive-IP zone when the zone boots and deletes it when the zone halts.


The net resource assigns an existing network interface in the global zone to the non-global zone. The network interface resource is the interface name. Each zone can have network interfaces that are set up when the zone transitions from the installed state to the ready state.


Adding a ZFS dataset resource enables the delegation of storage administration to a non-global zone. If the delegated dataset is a file system, the zone administrator can create and destroy file systems within that dataset, and modify properties of the dataset. The zone administrator can create snapshots, child file systems and volumes, and clones of its descendants. If the delegated dataset is a volume, the zone administrator can set properties and create snapshots. The zone administrator cannot affect datasets that have not been added to the zone or exceed any top level quotas set on the dataset assigned to the zone. After a dataset is delegated to a non-global zone, the zoned property is automatically set. A zoned file system cannot be mounted in the global zone because the zone administrator might have to set the mount point to an unacceptable value.

ZFS datasets can be added to a zone in the following ways.

  • As an lofs mounted file system, when the goal is solely to share space with the global zone

  • As a delegated dataset

See Chapter 10, Oracle Solaris ZFS Advanced Topics, in Oracle Solaris Administration: ZFS File Systems and File Systems and Non-Global Zones.

Also see Chapter 28, Troubleshooting Miscellaneous Oracle Solaris Zones Problems for information on dataset issues.


Each zone can have various file systems that are mounted when the zone transitions from the installed state to the ready state. The file system resource specifies the path to the file system mount point. For more information about the use of file systems in zones, see File Systems and Non-Global Zones.

Note - To use UFS file systems in a non-global zone through the fs resource, the system/file-system/ufs package must be installed into the zone after installation or through the AI manifest script.

The quota command documented in quota(1M) cannot be used to retrieve quota information for UFS file systems added through the fs resource.


Setting this property gives the zone administrator the ability to mount any file system of that type, either created by the zone administrator or imported by using NFS, and administer that file system. File system mounting permissions within a running zone are also restricted by the fs-allowed property. By default, only mounts of hsfs file systems and network file systems, such as NFS, are allowed within a zone.

The property can be used with a block device or ZVOL device delegated into the zone as well.

The fs-allowed property accepts a comma-separated list of additional file systems that can be mounted from within the zone, for example, ufs,pcfs.

zonecfg:my-zone> set fs-allowed=ufs,pcfs

This property does not affect zone mounts administrated by the global zone through the add fs or add dataset properties.

For security considerations, see File Systems and Non-Global Zones and Device Use in Non-Global Zones.


The device resource is the device matching specifier. Each zone can have devices that should be configured when the zone transitions from the installed state to the ready state.

Note - To use UFS file systems in a non-global zone through the device resource, the system/file-system/ufs package must be installed into the zone after installation or through the AI manifest script.


The rctl resource is used for zone-wide resource controls. The controls are enabled when the zone transitions from the installed state to the ready state.

See Setting Zone-Wide Resource Controls for more information.

Note - To configure zone-wide controls using the set global_property_name subcommand of zonefig instead of the rctl resource, see How to Configure the Zone.


A host ID that is different from the host ID of the global zone can be set by using the hostid property.


This generic attribute can be used for user comments or by other subsystems. The name property of an attr must begin with an alphanumeric character. The name property can contain alphanumeric characters, hyphens (-), and periods (.). Attribute names beginning with zone. are reserved for use by the system.

Resource Type Properties

Resources also have properties to configure. The following properties are associated with the resource types shown.


Define the user name and the authorizations for that user for a given zone.

zonecfg:my-zone> add admin
zonecfg:my-zone:admin> set user=zadmin
zonecfg:my-zone:admin> set auths=login,manage
zonecfg:my-zone:admin> end

The following values can be used for the auths property:

  • login (

  • manage (

  • clone (

Note that these auths do not enable you to create a zone. This capability is included in the Zone Security profile.


ncpus, importance

Specify the number of CPUs and, optionally, the relative importance of the pool. The following example specifies a CPU range for use by the zone my-zone. importance is also set.

zonecfg:my-zone> add dedicated-cpu
zonecfg:my-zone:dedicated-cpu> set ncpus=1-3
zonecfg:my-zone:dedicated-cpu> set importance=2
zonecfg:my-zone:dedicated-cpu> end


Specify the number of CPUs. The following example specifies a CPU cap of 3.5 CPUs for the zone my-zone.

zonecfg:my-zone> add capped-cpu
zonecfg:my-zone:capped-cpu> set ncpus=3.5
zonecfg:my-zone:capped-cpu> end

physical, swap, locked

Specify the memory limits for the zone my-zone. Each limit is optional, but at least one must be set.

zonecfg:my-zone> add capped-memory
zonecfg:my-zone:capped-memory> set physical=50m
zonecfg:my-zone:capped-memory> set swap=100m
zonecfg:my-zone:capped-memory> set locked=30m
zonecfg:my-zone:capped-memory> end

To use capped-memory resource, the resource-cap package must be installed in the global zone.


dir, special, raw, type, options

The fs resource parameters supply the values that determine how and where to mount file systems. The fs parameters are defined as follows:


Specifies the mount point for the file system


Specifies the block special device name or directory from the global zone to mount


Specifies the raw device on which to run fsck before mounting the file system (not applicable to ZFS)


Specifies the file system type


Specifies mount options similar to those found with the mount command

The lines in the following example specify that the dataset named pool1/fs1 in the global zone is to be mounted as /shared/fs1 in a zone being configured. The file system type to use is ZFS.

zonecfg:my-zone> add fs
zonecfg:my-zone:fs> set dir=/shared/fs1
zonecfg:my-zone:fs> set special=pool1/fs1
zonecfg:my-zone:fs> set type=zfs
zonecfg:my-zone:fs> end

For more information on parameters, see The -o nosuid Option, Security Restrictions and File System Behavior, and the fsck(1M) and mount(1M) man pages. Also note that section 1M man pages are available for mount options that are unique to a specific file system. The names of these man pages have the form mount_filesystem.

Note - The quota command documented in quota(1M) cannot be used to retrieve quota information for UFS file systems added through this resource.

dataset name, alias


The lines in the following example specify that the dataset sales is to be visible and mounted in the non-global zone and no longer visible in the global zone.

zonecfg:my-zone> add dataset
zonecfg:my-zone> set name=tank/sales
zonecfg:my-zone> end

A delegated dataset can have a non-default alias as shown in the following example. Note that a dataset alias cannot contain a forward slash (/).

zonecfg:my-zone> add dataset
zonecfg:my-zone:dataset> set name=tank/sales
zonecfg:my-zone:dataset> set alias=data
zonecfg:my-zone:dataset> end

To revert to the default alias, use clear alias.

zonecfg:my-zone> clear alias

linkname, lower-link, allowed-address, configure-allowed-address, defrouter, mac-address, mac-slot,mac-prefix, mtu, maxbw, priority, vlan-id, rxfanout, rxrings, txrings, link-protection, allowed-dhcp-cids, bandwidth-limit

The anet resource creates an automatic VNIC interface when the zone boots, and deletes the VNIC when the zone halts. The resource properties are managed through the zonecfg command. See the zonecfg(1M) man page for the complete text on properties available.


Specifies the underlying link for the link to be created. When set to auto, the zoneadmd daemon automatically chooses the link over which the VNIC is created each time the zone boots.


Specify a name for the automatically created VNIC.


Set the VNIC MAC address based on the specified value or keyword. If the value is not a keyword, it is interpreted as a unicast MAC address. See the zonecfg(1M) man page for supported keywords. If a random MAC address is selected, the generated address is preserved across zone boots, and zone detach and attach operations.


Configure an IP address for the exclusive-IP zone and also limit the set of configurable IP addresses that can be used by an exclusive-IP zone. To specify multiple addresses, use a list of comma-separated IP addresses.


The defrouter property can be used to set a default route when the non-global zone and the global zone reside on separate networks.

Any zone that has the defrouter property set must be on a subnet that is not configured for the global zone.

When the zonecfg command creates a zone using the SYSdefault template, an anet resource with the following properties is automatically included in the zone configuration. The linkname is automatically created over the physical Ethernet link and set to the first available name of the form netN, net0. To change the default values, use the zonecfg command.

The default creates an automatic VNIC over the physical Ethernet link, for example, nxge0 and assigns a factory MAC address to the VNIC. The optional lower-link property is set to the underlying link, nxge0, over which the automatic VNIC is to be created. VNIC properties such as the link name, underlying physical link, MAC address, bandwidth limit, as well as other VNIC properties, can be specified by using the zonecfg command. Note that ip-type=exclusive must also be specified.

zonecfg:my-zone> set ip-type=exclusive
zonecfg:my-zone:anet> add anet
zonecfg:my-zone:anet> set linkname=net0
zonecfg:my-zone:anet> set lower-link=auto
zonecfg:my-zone:anet> set mac-address=random
zonecfg:my-zone:anet> set link-protection=mac-nospoof
zonecfg:my-zone:anet> end

For more information on properties, see the zonecfg(1M) man page. For additional information on the link properties, see the dladm(1M) man page.


address, allowed-addressphysical, defrouter

Note - For a shared-IP zone, both the IP address and the physical device must be specified. Optionally, the default router can be set.

For an exclusive-IP zone, only the physical interface must be specified.

  • The allowed-address property limits the set of configurable IP addresses that can be used by an exclusive-IP zone.

  • The defrouter property can be used to set a default route when the non-global zone and the global zone reside on separate networks.

  • Any zone that has the defrouter property set must be on a subnet that is not configured for the global zone.

  • Traffic from a zone with a default router will go out to the router before coming back to the destination zone.

When shared-IP zones exist on different subnets, do not configure a data-link in the global zone.

In the following example for a shared-IP zone, the physical interface nge0 is added to the zone with an IP address of To list the network interfaces on the system, type:

global# ipadm show-if -po ifname,class,active,persistent

Each line of the output, other than the loopback lines, will have the name of a network interface. Lines that contain loopback in the descriptions do not apply to cards. The 46 persistent flags indicate that the interface is configured persistently in the global zone. The yes active value indicates that the interface is currently configured, and the class value of ip indicates that nge0 is a non-loopback interface. The default route is set to for the zone. Setting the defrouter property is optional. Note that ip-type=shared is required.

zonecfg:my-zone> set ip-type=shared
zonecfg:my-zone> add net
zonecfg:my-zone:net> set physical=nge0
zonecfg:my-zone:net> set address=
zonecfg:my-zone:net> set defrouter=
zonecfg:my-zone:net> end

In the following example for an exclusive-IP zone, a bge32001 link is used for the physical interface, which is a VLAN on bge1. To determine which data-links are available, use the command dladm show-link. The allowed-address property constrains the IP addresses that the zone can use. The defrouter property is used to set a default route. Note that ip-type=exclusive must also be specified.

zonecfg:my-zone> set ip-type=exclusive
zonecfg:my-zone> add net
zonecfg:myzone:net> set allowed-address=
zonecfg:my-zone:net> set physical=bge32001
zonecfg:myzone:net> set defrouter=
zonecfg:my-zone:net> end

Only the physical device type will be specified in the add net step. The physical property can be a VNIC, as described in Part III, Network Virtualization and Resource Management, in Oracle Solaris Administration: Network Interfaces and Network Virtualization.

Note - The Oracle Solaris operating system supports all Ethernet-type interfaces, and their data-links can be administered with the dladm command.


match, allow-partition, allow-raw-io

The device name to match can be a pattern to match or an absolute path. Both allow-partition and allow-raw-io can be set to true or false. The default is false. allow-partition enables partitioning. allow-raw-io enables uscsi. For more information on these resources, see zonecfg(1M).

In the following example, uscsi operations on a disk device are included in a zone configuration.

zonecfg:my-zone> add device
zonecfg:my-zone:device> set match=/dev/*dsk/cXtYdZ*
zonecfg:my-zone:device> set set allow-raw-io=true
zonecfg:my-zone:device> end


Caution - Before adding devices, see Device Use in Non-Global Zones, Running Applications in Non-Global Zones, and Privileges in a Non-Global Zone for restrictions and security concerns.


name, value

The following zone-wide resource controls are available.

  • zone.cpu-cap

  • zone.cpu-shares (preferred: cpu-shares)

  • zone.max-locked-memory

  • zone.max-lofi

  • zone.max-lwps (preferred: max-lwps)

  • zone.max-msg-ids (preferred: max-msg-ids)

  • zone.max-processes(preferred: max-processes

  • zone.max-sem-ids (preferred: max-sem-ids)

  • zone.max-shm-ids (preferred: max-shm-ids)

  • zone.max-shm-memory (preferred: max-shm-memory)

  • zone.max-swap

Note that the preferred, simpler method for setting a zone-wide resource control is to use the property name instead of the rctl resource, as shown in How to Configure the Zone. If zone-wide resource control entries in a zone are configured using add rctl, the format is different than resource control entries in the project database. In a zone configuration, the rctl resource type consists of three name/value pairs. The names are priv, limit, and action. Each of the names takes a simple value.

zonecfg:my-zone> add rctl
zonecfg:my-zone:rctl> set name=zone.cpu-shares
zonecfg:my-zone:rctl> add value (priv=privileged,limit=10,action=none)
zonecfg:my-zone:rctl> end
zonecfg:my-zone> add rctl
zonecfg:my-zone:rctl> set name=zone.max-lwps
zonecfg:my-zone:rctl> add value (priv=privileged,limit=100,action=deny)
zonecfg:my-zone:rctl> end

For general information about resource controls and attributes, see Chapter 6, Resource Controls (Overview) and Resource Controls Used in Non-Global Zones.


name, type, value

In the following example, a comment about a zone is added.

zonecfg:my-zone> add attr
zonecfg:my-zone:attr> set name=comment
zonecfg:my-zone:attr> set type=string
zonecfg:my-zone:attr> set value="Production zone"
zonecfg:my-zone:attr> end

You can use the export subcommand to print a zone configuration to standard output. The configuration is saved in a form that can be used in a command file.