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Creating and Using Oracle® Solaris Kernel Zones

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Updated: August 2021

About Kernel Zone Migration

Use the zoneadm migrate command to transfer a zone from one system to another. You can migrate kernel zones that are in different states, depending on your requirements. The zone's state determines the type of migration performed.

Oracle Solaris Kernel Zones supports the following types of migration:

  • Cold migration – The zone is not running on the source host when migrating the zone. The zone's state must be installed when you begin the migration, and after migration the state will be the same on the new host.

    This method is useful to migrate zones that use large amounts of memory, or that are providing services that require quick response time, and might not be good use cases for live migration.

  • Warm migration – You suspend the zone on the source host before migrating the zone. You must configure a suspend resource and the zone's state must be installed with an auxiliary state of suspended when you begin the migration. On the new host after the migration, the zone is also in a suspended auxiliary state, so you must resume the zone there.

    This method is useful for zones that are running applications that require a prolonged startup time when the zone is booted and cannot be live migrated. A warm migration requires an outage period for the zone.

  • Live migration – The zone is actively running on the source host while migrating. The zone's state must be running when you begin the migration. The memory state of the migrating zone is copied to the target host during the migration to enable the zone to pick up processing on the new host where it left off.

    This method is useful for situations where downtime must be minimized and applications must remain in a running state. The migration process can have a performance impact that might negatively affect heavy workloads. In cases where a performance impact is not acceptable, use warm migration or cold migration during a planned outage window.

Migrations must be done by an administrator or a user who has appropriate authorizations. You can enable specific non-root users to perform migrations as described in Rights Required to Perform Kernel Zone Migrations.

Oracle Solaris Kernel Zones also supports migration of all the kernel zones from a host system in a process called evacuation. See Evacuating Oracle Solaris Kernel Zones to a Target Host for more information.