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|Oracle Solaris Administration: Network Interfaces and Network Virtualization Oracle Solaris 11 Express 11/10|
Advances in Oracle Solaris have surpassed the capabilities of traditional tools to efficiently administer various aspects of network configuration. The ifconfig command, for example, has been the customary tool to configure network interfaces. However, this command does not implement persistent configuration settings. Over time, ifconfig has undergone enhancements for added capabilities in network administration. However, as a consequence, the command has become complex and confusing to use.
Another issue with interface configuration and administration is the absence of simple tools to administer TCP/IP Internet protocol properties or tunables. The ndd command has been the prescribed customization tool for this purpose. However, like the ifconfig command, ndd does not implement persistent configuration settings. Previously, persistent settings could be simulated for a network scenario by editing the boot scripts. With the introduction of the Service Management Facility (SMF), using such workarounds can become risky because of the complexities of managing SMF dependencies, particularly in the light of upgrades to the Oracle Solaris installation.
The ipadm command is introduced to eventually replace the ifconfig command for interface configuration. The command also replaces the ndd command to configure protocol properties.
As a tool for configuring interfaces, the ipadm command offers the following advantages:
It manages IP interfaces and IP addresses more efficiently by being the tool uniquely for IP interface administration, unlike the ifconfig command that is used for purposes other than interface configuration.
It provides an option to implement persistent interface and address configuration settings.
For a list of ifconfig options and their equivalent ipadm subcommands, see ifconfig Command Options and ipadm Command Options.
As a tool to set protocol properties, the ipadm command provides the following benefits:
It can set temporary or persistent protocol properties for IP, Address Resolution Protocol (ARP), Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP), and Internet Control Messaging Protocol (ICMP), as well as upper layer protocols such as TCP and User Datagram Protocol (UDP).
It provides information about each TCP/IP parameter, such as a property's current and default setting, as well as the range of possible settings. Thus, debugging information is more easily obtained.
The ipadm command also follows a consistent command syntax and therefore is easier to use.
For a list of ndd options and their equivalent ipadm subcommands, see ndd Command Options and ipadm Command Options.
For more details about the ipadm command, refer to the ipadm(1M) man page.