System Administration Guide, Volume 1

Overview of Software Packages

Software administration involves installing or removing software products. Sun and its third-party vendors deliver products in a form called a software package. (The term packaging generically refers to the method for distributing and installing software products to systems where the products will be used.) In its simplest form, you can think of a package as a collection of files and directories in a defined format. This format conforms to the Application Binary Interface (ABI), which is a supplement to the System V Interface Definition. The Solaris operating environment provides a set of utilities that interpret this format and provide the means to install or remove a package or to verify its installation.