System Administration Guide: Virtualization Using the Solaris Operating System

About Guest Installation

For the latest information on using the virt-install command-line utility to install guest domains, see Using virt-install to Install a Guest. This document provides xVM 3.3 examples.

To create a guest by using the virt-install utility, you must specify an installation source, disk storage, networking, and other parameters. After the guest OS is installed, it can be managed through the virsh utility, as described in Managing Guests.

Sizing Guests

The number of guests that can be created is determined primarily by the amount of memory and the disk space available.

Size your domain as you would configure a machine to do the same workload. The virtual disk requirement is dependent on the guest operating system and software that you install.

Installation Types

Types of virt-install installations that can be performed include the following:

About Network Installations

After you configure the installation server, you can run the virt-install command described in the virt-install(1M) from dom0. Use the -d option to add_install_client to specify that the client use DHCP. If the -d option is not specified, the client uses bootparams. For xVM paravirtualized guests, both approaches work. Use your site-specific tool for setting up the appropriate DHCP parameters for the client.

Network Installation

To do a network installation, use the -l option and provide a path to the network installation image. When giving a machine name or IP address, the domU must be able to get to that install machine directly, not go through a router to another net. For example:

-l nfs:install:/export/xvm/xvmgate-70i72-nd

You can also use an IP address instead of a machine name. For example:

-l nfs:

Example 39–1 Network Installation

virt-install -n gath-01 -r 1000 --nographics -f /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s3 \
-m "aa:04:03:35:a8:06" -p \
-l nfs:install48:/export/xvm/xvmgate-70i72-nd

ISO Image Installation

To use the ISO image, use the -l option with a full path to the ISO image. If a full path is given instead of the nfs:mach_name:path format of a network installation, then virt-install assumes that this is an ISO image:

-l /net/install/export/xvm/solarisdvd.iso

Example 39–2 ISO Image

virt-install -n gath-01 -r 1000 --nographics -f /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s3 \
-m aa:04:03:35:a8:06 -p \
-l /net/install48/export/xvm/solarisdvd.iso

Note –

You can quote arguments to options. While arguments, such as the path to an ISO image, are generally not quoted on the command line, quotes might be used in scripts.

-l "/net/install48/export/xvm/solarisdvd.iso"

JumpStart Installation

JumpStart configuration files are manually created and managed. You can initiate a custom JumpStart through network installation after setting up the server. When you create a profile server, you must ensure that systems can access the JumpStart directory on the profile server during a custom JumpStart installation. Each time that you add a system for network installation, use the add_install_client command to specify the profile server. You use the add_install_client command to create the /etc/bootparams entry for the domU.

To do a JumpStart with virt-install, use the --autocf option. For example:

--autocf nfs:install:/export/jumpstart/jump-user/x86

You cannot use a full path such as:

--autocf /net/install/export/jumpstart/jump-user/x86

Example 39–3 JumpStart

virt-install -n gath-01 -r 1000 --nographics -f /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s3 \
-m aa:04:03:35:a8:06 -p \
-l /net/install48/export/xvm/xvmgate-70i72/solarisdvd.iso
--autocf nfs:install:/export/jumpstart/jump-user/x86

Required Information

You will need to supply the guest domain information listed below.


Name for the guest domain. Each guest domain must have a unique name. This name serves as the label of the guest operating system. The name must be a real hostname for network installations to work.

image location

Location of the installation software. Installation must be over a network (which includes an NFS share from the local host operating system) or be an ISO install.

For example:


For HVM, an ISO or CDROM device should be given instead of an image location.

Installations using http or ftp, as shown in the following examples, are supported for Linux paravirtualized domain installations only:

The number of CPUs for the guest domain. The default is 1. You can assign specific CPUs. If undefined, the hypervisor makes the selection.


Amount of RAM to be allocated to the guest, in megabytes. A running domain should use a minimum of 512 megabytes. However, to install the guest domain, 1 Gbyte (1024 megabytes) is required.


Graphical console. Default is graphics. The nographics option applies to paravirtual guests only. If you intend to enable graphics support, you must decide whether the graphical installer should be used.

(Optional) Virtual network interface MAC address

This is the MAC address of the dom0's network interface that you want the domU to use to send and receive internet traffic. By default, the hypervisor tools uses the first available network interface card (NIC) when creating guest domains.

The default values for the action to be taken on a domU shutdown, reboot, or crash are set by virt-install. You currently cannot change these defaults.

The complete list of supported virt-install options are listed in the virt-install(1M) man page.