System Administration Guide: Virtualization Using the Solaris Operating System
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Branded Zone Configuration Data

Zone configuration data consists of two kinds of entities: resources and properties. Each resource has a type, and each resource can also have a set of one or more properties. The properties have names and values. The set of properties is dependent on the resource type.

Resource and Property Types

The resource and property types are described as follows:

Zone name

The zone name identifies the zone to the configuration utility. The following rules apply to zone names:

  • Each zone must have a unique name.

  • A zone name is case-sensitive.

  • A zone name must begin with an alphanumeric character.

    The name can contain alphanumeric characters, underbars (_), hyphens (-), and periods (.).

  • The name cannot be longer than 64 characters.

  • The name global and all names beginning with SUNW are reserved and cannot be used.


The zonepath property is the path to the zone root. Each zone has a path to its root directory that is relative to the global zone's root directory. At installation time, the global zone directory is required to have restricted visibility. It must be owned by root with the mode 700.

The non-global zone's root path is one level lower. The zone's root directory has the same ownership and permissions as the root directory (/) in the global zone. The zone directory must be owned by root with the mode 755. These directories are created automatically with the correct permissions, and do not need to be verified by the zone administrator. This hierarchy ensures that unprivileged users in the global zone are prevented from traversing a non-global zone's file system.




zonecfg zonepath


Root of the zone


Devices created for the zone

See Traversing File Systems for a further discussion of this issue.

Note - You can move a zone to another location on the same system by specifying a new, full zonepath with the move subcommand of zoneadm. See Moving a Non-Global Zone for instructions.


If this property is set to true, the zone is automatically booted when the global zone is booted. Note that if the zones service, svc:/system/zones:default is disabled, the zone will not autoboot, regardless of the setting of this property. You can enable the zones service with the svcadm command described in the svcadm(1M) man page:

global# svcadm enable zones

This property is used to set a boot argument for the zone. The boot argument is applied unless overridden by the reboot, zoneadm boot, or zoneadm reboot commands. See Branded Zone Boot Arguments.


This property is used to associate the zone with a specific resource pool on the system. Multiple zones can share the resources of one pool. Also see Specifying the dedicated-cpu Resource.


This property is used to specify a privilege mask other than the default. See Privileges in a Non-Global Zone.

Privileges are added by specifying the privilege name, with or without the leading priv_. Privileges are excluded by preceding the name with a dash (-) or an exclamation mark (!). The privilege values are separated by commas and placed within quotation marks ().

As described in priv_str_to_set(3C), the special privilege sets of none, all, and basic expand to their normal definitions. Because zone configuration takes place from the global zone, the special privilege set zone cannot be used. Because a common use is to alter the default privilege set by adding or removing certain privileges, the special set default maps to the default, set of privileges. When default appears at the beginning of the limitpriv property, it expands to the default set.

The following entry adds the ability to set the system clock and removes the ability to send raw Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) packets:

global# zonecfg -z userzone
zonecfg:userzone> set limitpriv="default,sys_time,!net_icmpaccess"

If the zone's privilege set contains a disallowed privilege, is missing a required privilege, or includes an unknown privilege, an attempt to verify, ready, or boot the zone will fail with an error message.


This property sets the scheduling class for the zone. See Scheduling Class in a Zone for additional information and tips.


This resource dedicates a subset of the system's processors to the zone while it is running. The dedicated-cpu resource provides limits for ncpus and, optionally, importance. For more information, seeSpecifying the dedicated-cpu Resource.


This resource establishes an absolute limit on the number of CPUs for this zone. The capped-cpu resource provides limits for ncpus. For more information, seeSpecifying the capped-cpu Resource.


This resource groups the properties used when capping memory for the zone. The capped-memory resource provides limits for physical, swap, and locked memory. At least one of these properties must be specified.


Each zone can have various file systems that are mounted when the zone transitions from the installed state to the ready state. The file system resource specifies the path to the file system mount point. For more information about the use of file systems in zones, see File Systems and Non-Global Zones.


The network interface resource is the interface name. Each zone can have network interfaces that are be set up when the zone transitions from the installed state to the ready state.

Only the shared-IP network configuration is supported in an lx branded zone


The rctl resource is used for zone-wide resource controls. The controls are enabled when the zone transitions from the installed state to the ready state.

Note - To configure zone-wide controls using the set global_property_name subcommand of zonefig instead of the rctl resource, see How to Configure the lx Branded Zone.


This generic attribute can be used for user comments or by other subsystems. The name property of an attr must begin with an alphanumeric character. The name property can contain alphanumeric characters, hyphens (-), and periods (.). Attribute names beginning with zone. are reserved for use by the system.

Resource Type Properties in the lx Branded Zone

Resources also have properties to configure. The following properties are associated with the resource types shown.


ncpus, importance

Specify the number of CPUs and, optionally, the relative importance of the pool. The following example specifies a CPU range for use by the zone lx-zone. importance is also set.

zonecfg:lx-zone> add dedicated-cpu
zonecfg:lx-zone:dedicated-cpu> set ncpus=1-3
zonecfg:lx-zone:dedicated-cpu> set importance=2
zonecfg:lx-zone:dedicated-cpu> end


Specify the number of CPUs. The following example specifies a CPU limit of 3.5 CPUs for use by the zone lx-zone.

zonecfg:lx-zone> add capped-cpu
zonecfg:lx-zone:capped-cpu> set ncpus=3.5
zonecfg:lx-zone:capped-cpu> end

physical, swap, locked

This resource groups the properties used when capping memory for the zone. The following example specifies the memory limits for the zone lx-zone. Each limit is optional, but at least one must be set.

zonecfg:my-zone> add capped-memory
zonecfg:lx-zone:capped-memory> set =50m
zonecfg:lx-zone:capped-memory> set swap=100m
zonecfg:lx-zone:capped-memory> set locked=30m
zonecfg:lx-zone:capped-memory> end

dir, special, raw, type, options

The lines in the following example add read-only access to CD or DVD media in a non-global zone. The file system is loopback mounted with the options ro,nodevices (read-only and no devices) in the non-global zone.

zonecfg:lx-zone> add fs
zonecfg:lx-zone:fs> set dir=/cdrom
zonecfg:lx-zone:fs> set special=/cdrom
zonecfg:lx-zone:fs> set type=lofs
zonecfg:lx-zone:fs> add options [ro,nodevices]
zonecfg:lx-zone:fs> end

Note that section 1M man pages are available for mount options that are unique to a specific file system. The names of these man pages have the form mount_filesystem.


address, physical

In the following example, IP address is added to a zone. An bge0 card is used for the physical interface.

zonecfg:lx-zone> add net
zonecfg:lx-zone:net> set physical=bge0
zonecfg:lx-zone:net> set address=
zonecfg:lx-zone:net> end

Note - To determine which physical interface to use, type ifconfig -a on your system. Each line of the output, other than loopback driver lines, begins with the name of a card installed on your system. Lines that contain LOOPBACK in the descriptions do not apply to cards.


name, value

Available zone-wide resource controls are described in Zone-Wide Resource Controls in an lx Branded Zone.

zonecfg:lx-zone> add rctl
zonecfg:lx-zone:rctl> set name=zone.cpu-shares
zonecfg:lx-zone:rctl> add value (priv=privileged,limit=10,action=none)
zonecfg:lx-zone:rctl> end
zonecfg:lx-zone> add rctl
zonecfg:lx-zone:rctl> set name=zone.max-lwps
zonecfg:lx-zone:rctl> add value (priv=privileged,limit=100,action=deny)
zonecfg:lx-zone:rctl> end

name, type, value

In the following example, a comment about a zone is added.

zonecfg:lx-zone> add attr
zonecfg:lx-zone:attr> set name=comment
zonecfg:lx-zone:attr> set type=string
zonecfg:lx-zone:attr> set value="Production zone"
zonecfg:lx-zone:attr> end

You can use the export subcommand to print a zone configuration to standard output. The configuration is saved in a form that can be used in a command file.

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