Every now and again an install on a new machine fails for me and I have to google to remember how to change the label. So this time I’m writing it down!

Docs.sun.com has some information on the differences between the two formats http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/doc/817-5093/disksconcepts-47761?l=en&a=view

But suffice to say that you cant install Solaris on an EFI disk, you need to change it to an SMI label. Thats done using ‘format -e’.

Select the label option, and then SMI Label. Once you have done that you can check the partition table as normal and your install can progress.

I hit an interesting problem tonight with jumpstart. Or old timeserver has gone away and the jumpstart clients are now going into interactive installs asking for the user to set the time. We rely heavily on automated installs so this needed to be fixed.

The solution was obvious I thought. I’ll just set up one of our servers as a ntp server and tell the jumpstart clients to query that in the sysidcfg files.

The only problem is that jumpstart doesn’t query ntp. After snooping on the server for a while it was clear that the packets reqesting the time were not NTP, they were TIME.

Heres how I diagnosed it.

First snoop the install.

snoop -v -o /tmp/snoop.op clientname

Then once your install has gone interactive you can convert that to a readble format:

snoop -i /tmp/snoop.op -v > /tmp/snoop.op.as

Examining the file you can find the time request:

TCP:  Source port = 32773
TCP:  Destination port = 37 (TIME)
TIME:  ----- TIME:   -----
TIME:  ""

So, whats port 37 exactly? /etc/services tells us that the time server runs there. (duh!)

The service that runs this is in Solaris 10 svc:/network/time:stream

On solaris 10 you need to do

svcadm enable svc:/network/time:stream

To check that is working ok you can telnet to the server and see if you get any output; if its not running you will get connection refused. This is basically what your jumpstart client is doing.

$ telnet patchtest-231 37
Connected to patchtest-231.
Escape character is '^]'.
Connection to patchtest-231 closed by foreign host.

We are now back to fully automated jumpstart installs!