Sun is slowly extending its OS virtualization technology, Solaris Containers, to support more than just binaries for Solaris 10.
After launching a version which can run Linux applications, Sun also developed a new version able to run Solaris 8 software which went live in October 2007.
The two share the same virtualization engine called Branded Zone or BrandZ.
Now the product is rebranded as Solaris 8 Containers and it’s available for free (support excluded) instead of as 90-days trial.
Additionally, Sun also releases Solaris 9 Containers, free of charge as well.
Both products come with a physical to virtual migration tool called P2V Archiver which takes care of moving Solaris 8 and 9 physical installations inside the above virtualization platforms hosted on Solaris 10.
It’s interesting to note how the effort put in the Containers technology over the last few years doesn’t seem exhausted despite Sun is investing a lot on hardware virtualization as well: developing its bare-metal hypervisor xVM Server and acquiring the hosted virtualization solution VirtualBox from innotek.
This means that the company aims to offer a broad range of solutions for server consolidation, pretty much like Parallels is about to do with its Virtuozzo and the upcoming Parallels Server.
Solaris 8 and 9 Containers are available here.