Working With the Solaris Management Console (Tasks)
This chapter provides an overview of the Solaris management tools used to perform system administration tasks. Topics include starting the Solaris Management Console (console), setting up Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) to use with the console, and working with the Solaris management tools in a name service environment.
For information on the procedures associated with performing system management tasks with the Solaris Management Console, see:
For information on troubleshooting Solaris Management Console problems, see "Troubleshooting the Solaris Management Console".
Solaris Management Console (Overview)
The following sections provide information about the Solaris Management Console.
What Is the Solaris Management Console?
The Solaris Management Console is a container for GUI-based management tools that are stored in collections referred to as toolboxes. The console includes a default toolbox with many basic management tools, including tools for managing users, projects, and cron jobs; for mounting and sharing file systems; and for managing disks and serial ports. For a brief description of each Solaris management tool, see Table 2-1.
You can always add tools to the existing toolbox, or you can create new toolboxes.
The Solaris Management Console has three primary components:
The Solaris Management Console Client
Called console, this is the visible interface and contains the GUI tools used to perform management tasks.
The Solaris Management Console Server
This component is located either on the same machine as the console or remotely, and provides all the back end functionality that allows management through the console.
The Solaris Management Console Toolbox Editor
This application, which looks similar to the console, is used to add or modify toolboxes, to add tools to a toolbox, or to extend the scope of a toolbox (to manage name service domains, for example.)
The default toolbox is visible when you start the console.
Solaris Management Console Tools
Table 2-1 Solaris Management Console Tool Suite
For More Information
Monitors and manages system information such as date, time, and timezone.
|"Displaying and Changing System Information (Tasks)" in System Administration Guide: Advanced Administration|
Monitors and manages the Solaris Management Console tools log and system logs.
"Troubleshooting Software Problems (Overview)" in System Administration Guide: Advanced Administration
Monitors and manages system processes.
"Processes and System Performance" in System Administration Guide: Advanced Administration
Monitors system performance.
"Managing System Performance (Overview)" in System Administration Guide: Advanced Administration
Manages users, rights, roles, groups, and mailing lists.
"What Are User Accounts and Groups?" and "Role-Based Access Control (Overview)" in System Administration Guide: Security Services
Creates and manages entries in the /etc/project database.
"Projects and Tasks" in System Administration Guide: Resource Management and Network Services
Computers and Networks
Creates and monitors computer and network information.
Solaris Management Console online help
Creates and manages scheduled cron jobs.
"Ways to Automatically Execute System Tasks" in System Administration Guide: Advanced Administration
Mounts and Shares
Mounts and shares file systems.
Creates and manages disk partitions.
Creates and manages volumes, hot spare pools, state database replicas, and disk sets.
Solaris Volume Manager Administration Guide
Devices and Hardware
Sets up terminals and modems.
"Managing Terminals and Modems (Overview)" in System Administration Guide: Advanced Administration
Context-sensitive help is available after you start a tool. For broader, more in-depth online information than the context help provides, see the expanded help topics, which you can reach from the console Help menu.
Why Use the Solaris Management Console?
Supports all experience levels
Those with little experience can complete tasks using the graphical interface, which includes dialog boxes, wizards, and context help. Experienced administrators will find that the console provides a convenient, secure alternative to using vi to manage hundreds of configuration parameters spread across tens or hundreds of systems.
Controls user access to the system
Although any user can access the console by default, only superuser can make changes in the initial configuration. As described in "Role-Based Access Control (Overview)" in System Administration Guide: Security Services, it is possible to create special user accounts called roles that can be assigned to users, typically administrators, who are permitted to make specific system changes.
The key benefit of RBAC is that roles can be limited to only those tasks that are necessary for doing their jobs. RBAC is not required for using the Solaris management tools. You can run all tools as superuser without making any changes.
Provides a command line interface
If preferred, administrators can operate the Solaris management tools through a command-line interface (CLI). Some commands are written specifically to mimic the GUI tool functions, (the commands for managing users, for example). These new commands are listed in Table 1-6, with the names and brief descriptions of each command. There is also a man page for each command.
For those Solaris management tools that have no special commands, (Mounts and Shares, for example), use the standard UNIX commands.
For in-depth information about how RBAC works, its benefits, and how to apply those benefits to your site, see "Role-Based Access Control (Overview)" in System Administration Guide: Security Services.
To learn more about using RBAC with the Solaris management tools, see "Using the Solaris Management Tools With RBAC (Task Map)".
Organization of the Solaris Management Console
In the following figure, the console is shown with the Users Tool open.
The main part of the console consists of three panes:
Navigation pane (at the left) - For accessing tools (or sets of tools), folders, or other toolboxes. Icons in the navigation pane are called nodes and are expandable if they are folders or toolboxes.
View pane (at the right) - For viewing information related to the node selected in the navigation pane, shows either the contents of the selected folder, subordinate tools, or data associated with the selected tool.
Information pane (at the bottom) - For displaying context-sensitive help or console events.