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I want to create a storage server - I've chosen to use OpenSolaris to take advantage of ZFS.

I'm looking for a way to install OpenSolaris without any graphical components, just a command line interface, but I don't really know where to start.

Edit: Perhaps I'm making things too complicated - instead of removing the GUI packages, is it easy to just configure OpenSolaris to boot to a CLI instead of loading Gnome on startup?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

The GUI isn't mandatory. You can disable it with "svcadm disable gdm" after installation. As already stated, there is also a text only installer should your hardware is missing a graphic card or should you do not want to use it. There are also small footprint distributions based on the OpenSolaris kernel like JeOS and Milax:

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There is a text-only version on genunix : It's textinstall-134-x86.iso

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At my work we once created a minimal jumpstart install for Solaris 9 (long time ago...).
We needed at least the cluster package SUNWCreq But then you can still remove packages.
We finally ended up with a working system with about 70 Packages. But even then you can strip i.e. sudo, tcsh and probably some more.
Just use pkgrm and see if you went too far... :)
The packages we ended up with:

application SMCsudo sudo
system SUNWaccu System Accounting, (Usr)
system SUNWadmc System administration core libraries
system SUNWadmfw System & Network Administration Framework
system SUNWadmr System & Network Administration Root
system SUNWatfsr AutoFS, (Root)
system SUNWatfsu AutoFS, (Usr)
system SUNWbash GNU Bourne-Again shell (bash)
system SUNWbip Basic IP commands (Usr)
system SUNWbzip The bzip compression utility
system SUNWcar Core Architecture, (Root)
system SUNWcarx Core Architecture, (Root) (64-bit)
system SUNWced Sun GigaSwift Ethernet Adapter (32-bit Driver)
system SUNWcedx Sun GigaSwift Ethernet Adapter (64-bit Driver)
system SUNWcsd Core Solaris Devices
system SUNWcsl Core Solaris, (Shared Libs)
system SUNWcslx Core Solaris Libraries (64-bit)
system SUNWcsr Core Solaris, (Root)
system SUNWcsu Core Solaris, (Usr)
system SUNWcsxu Core Solaris (Usr) (64-bit)
system SUNWeridx Sun RIO 10/100 Mb Ethernet Drivers (64-bit)
system SUNWesu Extended System Utilities
system SUNWesxu Extended System Utilities (64-bit)
system SUNWfns Federated Naming System
system SUNWfnsx Federated Naming System (64-bit)
system SUNWgzip The GNU Zip (gzip) compression utility
system SUNWhmd SunSwift Adapter Drivers
system SUNWhmdx SunSwift Adapter Drivers (64-bit)
system SUNWi15cs X11 ISO8859-15 Codeset Support
system SUNWi1cs X11 ISO8859-1 Codeset Support
system SUNWkvm Core Architecture, (Kvm)
system SUNWkvmx Core Architecture (Kvm) (64-bit)
system SUNWlibC Sun Workshop Compilers Bundled libC
system SUNWlibCx Sun WorkShop Bundled 64-bit libC
system SUNWlibms Forte Developer Bundled shared libm
system SUNWlldap LDAP Libraries
system SUNWlmsx Forte Developer Bundled 64-bit shared libm
system SUNWloc System Localization
system SUNWlocx System Localization (64-bit)
system SUNWnamos Northern America OS Support
system SUNWnamox Northern America 64-bit OS Support
system SUNWnfscr Network File System (NFS) client support (Root)
system SUNWnfscu Network File System (NFS) client support (Usr)
system SUNWnfscx Network File System (NFS) client support (Root) (64-bit)
system SUNWnfssr Network File System (NFS) server support (Root)
system SUNWnfssu Network File System (NFS) server support (Usr)
system SUNWnfssx Network File System (NFS) server support (Root) (64-bit)
system SUNWntpr NTP, (Root)
system SUNWntpu NTP, (Usr)
system SUNWpd PCI Drivers
system SUNWpdx PCI Drivers (64-bit)
system SUNWpiclr PICL Framework (Root)
system SUNWpiclu PICL Libraries, and Plugin Modules (Usr)
system SUNWpiclx PICL Libraries (64-bit)
system SUNWpl5u Perl 5.6.1 (core)
system SUNWpl5v Perl 5.6.1 (non-core)
system SUNWrcmdc Remote Network Client Commands
system SUNWses SCSI Enclosure Services Device Driver
system SUNWsesx SCSI Enclosure Services Device Driver (64-bit)
system SUNWsndmr Sendmail root
system SUNWsndmu Sendmail user
system SUNWsolnm Solaris Naming Enabler
system SUNWsprot Solaris Bundled tools
system SUNWswmt Install and Patch Utilities
system SUNWtcsh Tenex C-shell (tcsh) (not really necessary...)
system SUNWtnetc Telnet Command (client)
system SUNWtoo Programming Tools
system SUNWtoox Programming Tools (64-bit)
system SUNWzlib The Zip compression library
system SUNWzlibx The Zip compression library (64-bit)

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So could I just start will a vanilla install from the live CD then remove the X11 & Gnome packages to get a system that just boots to a CLI? – Joe Gauterin Jul 27 '10 at 13:44

We use OpenSolaris 2009.06 and the b132 preview on an 8GB USB stick. We don't worry about the extra GUI parts.

But you could try Nexenta Community Edition or EON NAS (Embedded ON, Network Attached Storage)

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Ok, I guess an OpenSolaris install without a GUI is near to impossible? ;-)
Been a while I installed Solaris and never used a gui, things are changing for the worse...
But then my best bet would be to do an install and make sure you have sshd runnning. Then start removing packages (pkginfo and pkgrm are your friends) just till you still have a working server and maybe the above list, though dated, helps a little...

Gee, if you insist on zfs (for probably good reasons) then FreeBSD can help? Otherwise, skip zfs, there are many good storage servers without it running Linux :)

Good luck!

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ZFS on FreeBSD is a bit outdated, in case he wants dedupe etc. – pauska Jul 28 '10 at 8:46
Yep, therefore the question mark :) – Oscar Aug 11 '10 at 9:20
Well, may be it is not as outdated as it seemed:… – Oscar Feb 28 '11 at 15:30

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