Reactive mode means the system automatically adapts to any changes in network conditions and then adjusts the system's current network configuration without requiring any manual reconfiguration. For example, if your wired network interface becomes unplugged, if a new wireless network becomes available, or if you change physical locations, the system adapts its network configuration accordingly.
With the primary focus on mobility, the reactive network configuration policy in Oracle Solaris enables the system's network configuration to change dynamically in response to different network events or at your request. This type of network configuration works best for notebook PC use and in situations where network conditions change often. When using the reactive mode, basic Ethernet and WiFi configuration of a system are performed automatically. The system automatically connects to a wired or wireless network at startup and displays notifications about the status of the currently active network connection on the desktop. You can configure reactive profiles with properties that determine the conditions under which a particular profile is enabled. These properties enable the profile's configuration to be applied dynamically to the system by the network management daemon, nwamd, as needed.
Reactive network configuration changes are typically triggered by the following events and activities:
Connecting or disconnecting an Ethernet cable
Connecting or disconnecting a wireless local area network (WLAN) card
Booting a system when a wired interface or a wireless interface is available
Resuming from suspend when a wired interface or a wireless interface is available (if supported)
Acquiring or losing a DHCP lease
You use two commands to administer network configuration when in the reactive mode: the netcfg command for making network configuration changes to profiles and the netadm command for displaying information about profiles, as well as enabling and disabling profiles. For a complete description, see the netcfg(1M) and netadm(1M) man pages. For task-related information, see Chapter 6, Administering Profile-Based Network Configuration in Oracle Solaris.
Fixed mode, on the other hand, is the opposite of reactive mode. When you are using the fixed mode, the network daemon instantiates a specific network configuration on the system, but does not automatically adjust that configuration to varying network conditions. For more information about the fixed mode, see About Network Configuration Modes.
For more information about all of the network administration commands that are supported and when to use them, see Oracle Solaris Network Administration Commands.