Two network configuration modes are supported in Oracle Solaris: fixed and reactive.
Fixed mode means the instantiated configuration on the system is persistent, regardless of whether any changes in network conditions occur. When such changes occur, such as the addition of interfaces, you have to reconfigure the network for the system to adapt to the new environment. When using a fixed mode, your system is configured by using the same set of network configuration commands every time. Corporate servers most often use this configuration mode due to a relatively stable network environment. When using the fixed mode, you use the dladm and ipadm commands to manage the various aspects of network configuration. See Oracle Solaris Network Administration Commands.
Reactive mode, on the other hand, is when the network is configured automatically in response to current network conditions. This mode is primarily used for laptop computers and notebook personal computers (PCs) and in situations where network conditions might change.
In reactive mode, a network daemon (nwamd) monitors the state of the system's network interfaces. Whenever network conditions change, the network daemon adjusts the network configuration dynamically. For example, a notebook PC might be physically attached to the corporate network, or it might not be physically attached. When physically attached, you most likely would disable the notebook's wireless interface. Also, it is most often desirable to have the wireless interface automatically enabled when the Ethernet cable is detached from the notebook. In addition, you might want the system to automatically adjust IP Filter settings when switching to a wireless network. The network daemon can automatically perform these types of dynamic configuration changes for you if you are in the reactive mode. Conversely, these types of changes require manual reconfiguration steps if you are in the fixed mode.