It's been my experience that JumpStart is not widely used, mainly because of its complexity. Many system administrators would rather go through an interactive installation for each system than automate the process. Many of the popular Unix systems have installation programs similar to JumpStart, and most are underutilized. System administrators could save a great deal of time if they would only learn more about this type of installation.
The key to using JumpStart is whether or not it will benefit you to spend the time learning and understanding what is required; and then creating the necessary class files, an install server, a configuration server; and editing a rules file to ensure all systems are accommodated. For system administrators managing large numbers of systems, say 100+, it is probably worth the effort, especially if the JumpStart installation is to be used more than once. A good example of this is in a test environment, where systems might have to be regularly reinstalled to a particular specification. If, on the other hand, the system administrator only manages three or four systems, and they only need to be installed once, then it is questionable as to whether the time will be worth investing. It might be more efficient to carry out interactive installations.
We've described the entire process of installing a networked system via JumpStart, including how to set up the boot server, the install server, and the configuration files located on the configuration server. We also described the necessary procedures that need to be performed for each client that you plan to install.
You also learned how to use the Solaris Flash archive feature to create an exact image of a particular Solaris environment and replicate this environment across many systems, or simply store it away in case you need to rebuild the system as a result of a system failure. You learned how the Flash archive can be used in a JumpStart session for a completely automated installation.
Finally in this chapter, you learned about a new facility, the Preboot Execution Environment (PXE), which facilitates the installing of x86 clients across the network using a DHCP server to provide the boot configuration information. You also learned how to configure a DHCP server to add the required symbols to properly support a booting x86 client.
This concludes the study material for the second exam. We encourage you to use the test exams on the enclosed CD-ROM to test your knowledge of the chapters you've read. If you fully understand all the material covered in this book, you should have no problem passing both exams. If you don't score well on the enclosed CD-ROM, go back and review the topics you are weak in.
Before taking the exam however, visit www.pdesigninc.com and read up-to-date information about the exams, comments from others that have taken the exams, test-taking tips, and links to additional study materials to be sure you are adequately prepared before spending $150 for every exam.
When you're confident that you understand all the material covered in this section, you are ready to take the real exam. Good luck!