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Oracle Solaris has eight run levels, which are described in the following table. The default run level is specified in the /etc/inittab file as run level 3.
Table 1-3 Oracle Solaris Run Levels
In addition, the svcadm command can be used to change the run level of a system, by selecting a milestone at which to run. The following table shows which run level corresponds to each milestone.
Table 1-4 Run Levels and SMF Milestones
The init process is started and reads the properties defined in the svc:/system/environment:init SMF service to set any environment variables. By default, only the TIMEZONE variable is set.
Then, init reads the inittab file and does the following:
Executes any process entries that have sysinit in the action field so that any special initializations can take place before users log in to the system.
Passes the startup activities to svc.startd.
For a detailed description of how the init process uses the inittab file, see the init(1M) man page.
In general, changing milestones or run levels is an uncommon procedure. If it is necessary, using the init command to change to a run level will change the milestone as well and is the appropriate command to use. The init command is also good for shutting down a system.
However, booting a system using the none milestone can be very useful for debugging startup problems. There is no equivalent run level to the none milestone. For more information, see How to Boot a System Without Starting Any Services.