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310-202 exam Dumps Source : Certified System Administrator for the Solaris 10 OS, Part ll
Test Code : 310-202
Test Name : Certified System Administrator for the Solaris 10 OS, Part ll
Vendor Name : SUN
: 558 Real Questions
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licensed Solaris device directors are assistance know-how (IT) specialists who install and retain community servers operating some of the Solaris operating system at the moment obtainable during the Oracle supplier. they are continually employed by companies and different agencies with laptop networks that use the company's open source software products. As programs administrators, they may additionally also supervise other IT group of workers and reply to questions and renovation requests from office workers.education Bachelor's diploma in tips know-how or laptop science suggested Job capabilities Troubleshooting, analytical thinking, multitasking, communique revenue range (2019)* $61,390 to $one hundred forty five,437 with solar certified gadget Administrator credentials Job boom (2016-2026)** 6% for community and desktop programs directors
supply: *Payscale, **U.S. Bureau of Labor informationRequired schooling
Most methods directors have achieved a Bachelor of Science in advice know-how, computing device Science or a related field. Core coursework customarily contains subject matters in programming languages and techniques, networking and techniques design. Solaris certifications are available during the Oracle enterprise in network, protection and systems administration. necessities consist of a passing ranking on an exam, which candidates can prepare for through enrolling in lessons at the Oracle Academy or an accredited working towards center, reviewing seminar packages and taking apply exams.capabilities Required
techniques directors are analytical thinkers who're in a position to troubleshoot issues for significant businesses of network device clients. traumatic situations require clear, quick thinking, and can contain working lengthy hours until the problem is mounted. The ability to multitask can be valuable when managing more than one task at a time. communication competencies are key when working with nontechnical body of workers members.career and income Outlook
The U.S. Bureau of Labor records (BLS) anticipated that jobs for gadget directors in typical will raise by using a regular pace, 6% from 2016 to 2026. certified gadget administrators will savour stunning job possibilities, as agencies more and more depend on full-time professionals to hold their computing device working systems. in response to Payscale.com, certified techniques directors for Solaris operating methods earned between $sixty one,390 and $145,437 in April 2019.
Mike Yell, a seventh grade social experiences teacher at Hudson (Wis.) center faculty, accomplished certification in 2003 and renewed his certificates in 2013. The Wisconsin educator spoke of he would “strongly recommend countrywide board certification to teachers wishing to take on a rigorous growth challenge as a way to in the end increase their practice.”
countrywide board certification for academics, governed by way of the country wide Board for expert instructing specifications in Arlington, Va., has been gaining momentum the previous 25 years. The board presents trainer certification in 16 disciplines and 4 developmental stages to satisfy the needs of just about all of america’s lecturers, in line with the NBPTS site.
countrywide board certification is a voluntary manner that goes beyond entry-level state certification. apart from maintaining a legitimate state educating license, candidates for board certification must dangle a bachelor’s degree from an accepted institution and have three or more years of educating adventure.
country wide certification isn't supposed to change state teaching licenses, but provides a method of promoting and moneymaking accomplished educating.
every certificate area has a collection of specifications developed by way of teachers who're specialists in that area area and developmental level and are in accordance with what the countrywide board calls the 5 Core Propositions. The requisites deliver tips about what proficiencies a candidate must show to obtain certification.
Some faculty districts present extra pay or stipends for teachers who earn country wide board certification. Others give these lecturers extra opportunities for management or skilled increase. Some districts present no rewards and teachers are trying to find certification for private factors.
Angie Jorgensen, fourth grade trainer at Pinecrest basic school in Hastings, Minn., stated one rationale she accomplished the process “turned into economic, as a result of in Hastings, we're one of the crucial districts that pay for national board certification.”
She had also lately entire engaged on her grasp’s degree, so she was in a “rigorous approach,” so moving on with countrywide boards became “a nice transition.”
Jorgensen credited a bunch of veteran lecturers with assisting her work during the technique. “a few of them have been closer to retirement, and they saw this probability to are attempting to substitute themselves as country wide board teachers, to get a few of us younger teachers licensed before they left. They were an important aid.”
Collaboration with other academics is a crucial a part of the country wide board certification procedure and Mike Fuller, band instructor at Meyer middle faculty in River Falls, Wis., stated that “the more I learned in regards to the technique worried, the greater fascinated I became in it. I realized of three other area song lecturers who have been when you consider that working on their country wide boards and the chance to have a built-in network and aid device helped me come to a decision to head for it.”
other teachers are influenced by means of very own increase.
“i am a lifelong learner,” observed Betsy Weis, math teacher at Farmington (Minn.) high college, “and that i wanted to step up to a brand new problem, primarily since I knew it might improve my teaching knowledge.”
lecturers need to use the requisites for his or her certificate enviornment to guide responses to 4 accessories which require candidates to demonstrate content capabilities and instructional methods. Candidates ought to write extensive essays explaining classes in their classrooms, examining their training, and reflecting on the way to increase the instructions. They additionally give videos of themselves educating in their classrooms and take a pc-based verify on their topics.
“The NBC questions are excessive and require one to contemplate scholar records, instructing follow, leadership, collaboration, community involvement, and expertise use,” Weiss referred to. “I found out new and improved how to improve scholar getting to know.”
The procedure can take as little as 365 days to comprehensive, however many teachers choose to unfold it out over three years. The difficult nature of the assessments potential that many candidates have to repeat materials of the technique as a part of the getting to know and growth supported by way of the national board.
“It changed into very time consuming,” noted Mary Rumpel, math branch head at Ellsworth excessive faculty in Pierce County, Wis. “The challenging part turned into that you just had to clarify why you train in the manner that you simply do. for example, in a single part, you had to take a few students and the assignments you provide them, and explain how you get these dynamically distinctive college students to every be taught the discipline area, documenting what you’ve defined.”
She introduced, “it's a huge venture, one as a way to take lots of self-reflection, loads of trials and error, and loads of weekends to do smartly.”
This process additionally requires a financial dedication. the full manner charges $1,900, and many candidates are able to find aid with this from promises, loans, or school district funds. Others pay the fee themselves.
“greater than a decade of research from across the nation confirms that students taught by way of board-licensed lecturers learn greater than college students taught by using other academics,” wrote the countrywide board on its site. They encompass links to a few academic experiences about the results of country wide board certification on college students.
“The national boards procedure concerned looking at what i was already doing in the school room and explaining its influence on pupil researching,” Fuller observed. That required me to think an awful lot about my teaching suggestions and accept as true with how advantageous they have been in helping college students to grow. The 4 papers that candidates are required to write down make you articulate why you do what you do and the way it positively impacts students.”
up to now named national Social reviews teacher of the yr, Yell spoke of the “most critical influence of board certification changed into internalizing the manner of learning and staying on suitable of the scholarship in education in addition to in my content material area, and in the carrying on with process of reflecting on every thing I do within the classroom.”
attaining countrywide board certification was no longer an end for Rumpel, but a starting.
“I consider by using maintaining the certification, I believe like I can't let the students down,” she referred to. “I need to hold challenging myself each yr and work out how to maintain getting superior.”
When Tim Collins, superintendent of Hastings Public colleges,interviews new lecturers, he noted he is attempting to find “a strong work ethic and the desire to grow professionally for a lifetime. academics who come to a decision to head during the national board certification manner exemplify those two features.”
these teachers frequently supply a positive function mannequin for other teachers of their constructions and districts.
“When an individual grows professionally, they carry that stage of confidence and most fulfilling practices to their colleagues each without delay and not directly,” Collins said. “The method of country wide board certification helps a teacher to become better informed in their follow, reflective in the school room, and typical support their very own teaching innovations.”
For more counsel about national board certification, see the web site for the national Board for knowledgeable instructing specifications at www.nbpts.org/
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Disks are divided into regions called “disk slices” or “disk partitions.” A slice is composed of a single range of contiguous blocks. It is a physical subset of the disk (except for slice 2, which represents the entire disk). A UFS or the swap area is built within these disk slices. The boundaries of a disk slice are defined when a disk is partitioned using the format utility, and the slice information for a particular disk can be viewed by using the prtvtoc command. Each disk slice appears to the OS (and to the system administrator) as though it were a separate disk drive.
Disk slicing differs between the SPARC and x86 platforms. On the SPARC platform, the entire disk is devoted to the OS; the disk can be divided into 8 slices, numbered 0 to 7. On the x86 platform, the disk is divided into fdisk partitions using the fdisk command. The fdisk partition is divided into 10 slices, numbered 0 to 9.
A physical disk consists of a stack of circular platters. Data is stored on these platters in a cylindrical pattern called “cylinders” as illustrated in Figure 4-1. Cylinders can be grouped and isolated from one another. A group of cylinders is referred to as a slice. A slice is defined with start and end points, starting from the outside of the platters to the center of the stack of platters, which is called the “spindle.”
For example, a 73GB SCSI disk has 14,087 cylinders, numbered 0 to 14,086. Cylinder 0 is on the outside edge of the platters, and cylinder 14,086 is the closest to the spindle. Disk slices are defined by an offset and a size in cylinders. The offset is the distance from cylinder 0. To define a slice, the administrator provides a starting cylinder and an ending cylinder. A slice spanning from cylinder 0 to 14,086 would use the entire disk and is typical of the slicing scheme used on a ZFS boot disk.
When setting up slices, remember these rules:
When they discuss ZFS in Chapter 5, you’ll learn how to get around some of these limitations in file systems.Displaying Disk Configuration Information
As described earlier, disk configuration information is stored in the disk label. If you know the disk and slice number, you can display information for a disk by using the print volume table of contents (prtvtoc) command. You can specify the volume by specifying any slice defined on the disk (for example, /dev/rdsk/c0t3d0s2 or /dev/rdsk/c0t3d0s*). Regardless of which slice you specify, all slices defined on the disk will be displayed. If you know the target number of the disk but do not know how it is divided into slices, you can show information for the entire disk by specifying either slice 2 or s*. The following steps show how you can examine information stored on a disk’s label by using the prtvtoc command.
Type the following text and press Enter.# prtvtoc /dev/rdsk/c2t0d0s2<cr>
The system responds with the following:* /dev/rdsk/c2t0d0s2 partition map * * Dimensions: * 512 bytes/sector * 424 sectors/track * 24 tracks/cylinder * 10176 sectors/cylinder * 14089 cylinders * 14087 accessible cylinders * * Flags: * 1: unmountable * 10: read-only * * Unallocated space: * First Sector Last * Sector Count Sector * 0 10176 10175 * * First Sector Last * Partition Tag Flags Sector Count Sector Mount Directory 0 2 00 10176 143339136 143349311 2 5 01 0 143349312 143349311
The disk described is a SAS disk, target 0 with an SMI VTOC label. The prtvtoc command shows the number of cylinders and heads, as well as how the disk’s slices are arranged.
The following is an example of running the prtvtoc command on a SCSI disk with an EFI label:# prtvtoc /dev/rdsk/c2t1d0s1<cr> * /dev/rdsk/c2t1d0s1 partition map * * Dimensions: * 512 bytes/sector * 8385121 sectors * 8385054 accessible sectors * * Flags: * 1: unmountable * 10: read-only * * First Sector Last * Partition Tag Flags Sector Count Sector Mount Directory 0 2 01 34 41006 41039 1 2 00 41040 8327663 8368702 /mnt 8 11 00 8368703 16384 8385086 Using the format Utility to Create Slices: SPARC
Before you can create a file system on a disk, the disk must be formatted, and you must divide it into slices using the format utility. Formatting involves two separate processes:
When a disk is formatted, header and trailer information is superimposed on the disk. When the format utility runs a surface analysis, the controller scans the disk for defects. It should be noted that defects and formatting information reduce the total disk space available for data. This is why a new disk usually holds only 90% to 95% of its capacity after formatting. This percentage varies according to disk geometry and decreases as the disk ages and develops more defects.
The need to perform a surface analysis on a disk drive has dropped as more manufacturers ship their disk drives formatted and partitioned. You should not need to perform a surface analysis within the format utility when adding a disk drive to an existing system unless you think disk defects are causing problems. The primary reason that you would use format is if you want to view or change the partitioning scheme on a disk.
The format utility searches your system for all attached disk drives and reports the following information about the disk drives it finds:
In addition, the format utility is used in disk repair operations to do the following:
The installation program partitions and labels disk drives as part of installing the Oracle Solaris release. However, you might need to use the format utility when doing the following:
The following example uses the format utility to create disk slices on a disk.
The system responds with the following:Searching for disks ... done AVAILABLE DISK SELECTIONS: 0. c0t0d0 <SUN36G cyl 24620 alt 2 hd 27 sec 107> /pci@1f,0/pci@1/scsi@8/sd@0,0 1. c0t1d0 <SUN36G cyl 24620 alt 2 hd 27 sec 107> /pci@1f,0/pci@1/scsi@8/sd@1,0
Specify the disk (enter its number).
The system responds with the format main menu:FORMAT MENU: disk - select a disk type - select (define) a disk type partition - select (define) a partition table current - describe the current disk format - format and analyze the disk repair - repair a defective sector label - write label to the disk analyze - surface analysis defect - defect list management backup - search for backup labels verify - read and display labels save - save new disk/partition definitions inquiry - show vendor, product and revision volname - set 8-character volume name !<cmd> - execute <cmd>, then return quit
Table 4-4 describes the format main menu items.Table 4-4 Format Main Menu Item Descriptions
Lists all of the system’s drives. Also lets you choose the disk you want to use in subsequent operations. This disk is referred to as the current disk.
Identifies the manufacturer and model of the current disk. Also displays a list of known drive types. Choose the Auto configure option for all SCSI-2 disk drives.
Creates and modifies slices.
Describes the current disk (that is, device name, device type, number of cylinders, alternate cylinders, heads, sectors, and physical device name).
Formats the current disk using one of these sources of information in this order:
Information that is found in the format.dat file.
Information from the automatic configuration process.
Information that you type at the prompt if no format.dat entry exists.
This command does not apply to IDE disks. IDE disks are preformatted by the manufacturer.
x86 platform only: Runs the fdisk program to create an Oracle Solaris fdisk partition.
Used to repair a specific block on the current disk.
Writes a new label to the current disk. This is not the same as labeling the disk with volname.
Runs read, write, and compare tests.
Retrieves and displays defect lists. This feature does not apply to IDE disks. IDE disks manage defects automatically.
Searches for backup labels if the VTOC becomes corrupted or gets deleted.
Displays information about the current disk such as device name, device type, number of cylinders, alternate cylinders, heads, sectors, and partition table.
Saves new disk and partition information.
SCSI disks only: Displays the vendor, product name, and revision level of the current drive. This will also display the disk’s current firmware.
Labels the disk with a new eight-character volume name that you specify. This is not the same as writing the partition table to disk using label.
Exits the format menu. Pressing Ctrl+D will also exit the format utility from the main menu or from any submenu.
Type “partition” at the format prompt. The partition menu is displayed.format> partition<cr> PARTITION MENU: 0 - change '0' partition 1 - change '1' partition 2 - change '2' partition 3 - change '3' partition 4 - change '4' partition 5 - change '5' partition 6 - change '6' partition 7 - change '7' partition select - select a predefined table modify - modify a predefined partition table name - name the current table print - display the current table label - write partition map and label to the disk !<cmd> - execute <cmd>, then return quit
Type “print” to display the current partition map.partition> print<cr>
The system responds with the following:Current partition table (original): Total disk cylinders available: 24620 + 2 (reserved cylinders) Part Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks 0 root wm 1418 - 9924 11.72GB (8507/0/0) 24576723 1 var wm 9925 - 13469 4.88GB (3545/0/0) 10241505 2 backup wm 0 - 24619 33.92GB (24620/0/0) 71127180 3 swap wu 0 - 1417 1.95GB (1418/0/0) 4096602 4 unassigned wm 13470 - 14887 1.95GB (1418/0/0) 4096602 5 unassigned wm 14888 - 16112 1.69GB (1225/0/0) 3539025 6 unassigned wm 16113 - 16821 1000.15MB (709/0/0) 2048301 7 home wm 16822 - 23910 9.77GB (7089/0/0) 20480121
The columns displayed with the partition table are
Tag: This is an optional value that indicates how the slice is being used. The value can be any of the following names that best fits the function of the file system you are creating:
unassigned, boot, root, swap, usr, backup, stand, var, home, alternates, reserved, system, BIOS_boot
Flag: Values in this column can be
Size: The slice size specified as
You can use the name and save commands in the partition menu to name and save a newly created partition table to a file that can be referenced by name later, when you want to use this same partition scheme on another disk. When issuing the name command, you’ll provide a unique name for this partition scheme and then issue the save command to save the information to the ./format.dat file. Normally this file is located in the /etc directory, so provide the full pathname for /etc/format.dat to update the master file.
After you partition the disk, you must label it by typing label at the partition prompt:partition> label<cr>
You are asked for confirmation on labeling the disk as follows:Ready to label disk, continue? y<cr>
Enter “Y” to continue.
After labeling the disk, type “quit” to exit the partition menu or press Ctrl+D to exit the format utility:partition> quit<cr>
Type “quit” again to exit the format utility:format> quit<cr>
It’s important to point out a few undesirable things that can happen when defining disk partitions with the format utility if you’re not careful. First, be careful not to waste disk space. Wasted disk space can occur when you decrease the size of one slice and do not adjust the starting cylinder number of the adjoining disk slice.
Second, don’t overlap disk slices. Overlapping occurs when one or more cylinders are allocated to more than one disk slice. For example, increasing the size of one slice without decreasing the size of the adjoining slice will create overlapping partitions. The format utility will not warn you of wasted disk space or overlapping partitions.
The main reason a system administrator uses the format utility is to divide a disk into disk slices. In Oracle Solaris 11 11/11, for a bootable ZFS root pool, the disks in the pool must contain slices and must be labeled with an SMI label. The simplest configuration would be to put the entire disk capacity in slice 0 and use that slice for the root pool. Bootable ZFS root pools are discussed further in Chapter 5.
I’ll describe how to use the SMI label for SPARC-based systems. For example, on a SPARC-based system with a 72GB disk, you would need to have 68GB of usable space located in slice 0. Similarly, on an x86-based system with a 72GB disk, you would also need to allow 68GB of usable space located in slice 0. A small amount of boot information is contained in slice 8. Slice 8 requires no administration and cannot be changed.
Follow these steps to partition a disk (c2t0d0) to be used as a ZFS boot disk (bootable ZFS root pool) on a SPARC-based system. If the disk has an EFI label, and the firmware has not been upgraded, you must first convert it to an SMI label.
Use the prtvtoc command to verify the disk label as follows:# prtvtoc /dev/rdsk/c2t0d0s2<cr>
The system displaysPart Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks 0 root wm 1 - 14086 68.35GB (14086/0/0) 143339136 1 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 2 backup wu 0 - 14086 68.35GB (14087/0/0) 143349312 3 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 4 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 5 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 6 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 7 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0
Notice that slice 2 is labeled “backup” and the slices are numbered 0-7. This is an SMI label.
The following shows the output that is displayed for a disk with an EFI label:Part Tag Flag First Sector Size Last Sector 0 usr wm 34 68.36GB 143358320 1 unassigned wm 0 0 0 2 unassigned wm 0 0 0 3 unassigned wm 0 0 0 4 unassigned wm 0 0 0 5 unassigned wm 0 0 0 6 unassigned wm 0 0 0 7 unassigned wm 0 0 0 8 reserved wm 143358321 8.00MB 143374704
Notice there is a slice 8 and slice 2 is NOT labeled “backup.” This is an EFI label and would need to be changed. Use the following steps to change the label from an EFI label to an SMI label:
As root, use the format -e command and select the disk to label as follows:# format –e<cr>
The system displays a list of disks. In the example, I selected disk 1 (c2t1d0):Searching for disks ... done AVAILABLE DISK SELECTIONS: 0. c2t0d0 <SUN72G cyl 14087 alt 2 hd 24 sec 424> /pci@780/pci@0/pci@9/scsi@0/sd@0,0 1. c2t1d0 <SEAGATE-ST973402SSUN72G-0603-68.37GB> /pci@780/pci@0/pci@9/scsi@0/sd@1,0 Specify disk (enter its number): 1<cr> selecting c2t1d0 [disk formatted]
The main menu is displayed. Type “label” to label the disk:FORMAT MENU: disk - select a disk type - select (define) a disk type partition - select (define) a partition table current - describe the current disk format - format and analyze the disk repair - repair a defective sector label - write label to the disk analyze - surface analysis defect - defect list management backup - search for backup labels verify - read and display labels inquiry - show disk ID scsi - independent SCSI mode selects cache - enable, disable or query SCSI disk cache volname - set 8-character volume name !<cmd> - execute <cmd>, then return quit format> label<cr>
Select option 1 to label the disk with an SMI label and press Enter when prompted for autoconfiguration: SMI Label  EFI Label Specify Label type: 0<cr> Auto configuration via format.dat[no]?<cr> Auto configuration via generic SCSI-2[no]?<cr> format>
Exit the format utility.format> quit<cr>
To slice the disk so that it can be used as a ZFS boot disk, follow these steps:
As root, enter the format utility:# format<cr> Searching for disks ... done
Select the disk that is going to be sliced. In the example, I will select disk 1 (c2t1d0):AVAILABLE DISK SELECTIONS: 0. c2t0d0 <SUN72G cyl 14087 alt 2 hd 24 sec 424> /pci@780/pci@0/pci@9/scsi@0/sd@0,0 1. c2t1d0 <SEAGATE-ST973402SSUN72G-0603-68.37GB> /pci@780/pci@0/pci@9/scsi@0/sd@1,0 Specify disk (enter its number): 1<cr>
The system responds withselecting c2t1d0 [disk formatted]
Type “partition” at the format prompt. The partition menu is displayed.format> partition<cr> PARTITION MENU: 0 - change '0' partition 1 - change '1' partition 2 - change '2' partition 3 - change '3' partition 4 - change '4' partition 5 - change '5' partition 6 - change '6' partition 7 - change '7' partition select - select a predefined table modify - modify a predefined partition table name - name the current table print - display the current table label - write partition map and label to the disk !<cmd> - execute <cmd>, then return quit
Type “print” to display the current partition map.partition> print<cr>
The system responds with the following:partition> print<cr> Current partition table (original): Total disk cylinders available: 14087 + 2 (reserved cylinders) Part Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks 0 root wm 0 - 25 129.19MB (26/0/0) 264576 1 swap wu 26 - 51 129.19MB (26/0/0) 264576 2 backup wu 0 - 14086 68.35GB (14087/0/0) 143349312 3 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 4 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 5 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 6 usr wm 52 - 14086 68.10GB (14035/0/0) 142820160 7 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 partition>
Enter “modify” to change the partition table:partition> modify<cr>
Select option 1 for “All Free Hog” when prompted:Select partitioning base: 0. Current partition table (original) 1. All Free Hog Choose base (enter number) ? 1<cr> Part Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks 0 root wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 1 swap wu 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 2 backup wu 0 - 14086 68.35GB (14087/0/0) 143349312 3 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 4 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 5 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 6 usr wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 7 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0
Type “yes” when asked whether to continue:Do you wish to continue creating a new partition table based on above table[yes]? yes<cr>
Type “0” for the Free Hog partition:Free Hog partition? 0<cr>
The system will prompt you to enter a size for each partition. Press Enter when prompted as follows, and each slice will be 0MB:Enter size of partition '1' [0b, 0c, 0.00mb, 0.00gb]:<cr> Enter size of partition '3' [0b, 0c, 0.00mb, 0.00gb]:<cr> Enter size of partition '4' [0b, 0c, 0.00mb, 0.00gb]:<cr> Enter size of partition '5' [0b, 0c, 0.00mb, 0.00gb]:<cr> Enter size of partition '6' [0b, 0c, 0.00mb, 0.00gb]:<cr> Enter size of partition '7' [0b, 0c, 0.00mb, 0.00gb]:<cr>
Because all of the slices have been set to “0,” the free hog space is the entire disk. This space will be allocated to slice 0 as specified in step 6.
When prompted to make this the current partition table, press Enter to use the default value “yes”:Okay to make this the current partition table[yes]?<cr>
When prompted for a table name, enter “rootdisk.” This name is not significant and can be any name.Enter table name (remember quotes): rootdisk<cr>
Enter “pr” to display the new partition table:partition> pr<cr> Current partition table (unnamed): Total disk cylinders available: 14087 + 2 (reserved cylinders) Part Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks 0 root wm 0 - 14086 68.35GB (14087/0/0) 143349312 1 swap wu 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 2 backup wu 0 - 14086 68.35GB (14087/0/0) 143349312 3 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 4 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 5 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 6 usr wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 7 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 partition>
Notice that slice 0 is the entire disk.
Enter “quit” or press Ctrl+D to exit the format utility.partition> quit<cr>
As described earlier in this chapter, Oracle Solaris on the x86 platform treats disk drives slightly differently than on the SPARC-based systems. Disks on the x86 platform must have an fdisk partition table. The x86-based systems use the fdisk partition table to identify parts of the disk reserved for different OSs and to identify the partition that the system will boot from. This boot partition is referred to as the “active disk” partition. You can assign one fdisk partition on a disk to be used for Oracle Solaris.
On an x86-based system, once a disk drive has been physically installed and verified as working, you’ll use the format command to slice the disk, but first an fdisk partition must be created on the new drive. You can create this fdisk partition using the fdisk command from the command line or through the format utility. The following steps describe how to create a fixed disk partition table on a disk using the format utility:
As root, type “format” to get into the format utility.# format<cr>
The following menu appears:AVAILABLE DISK SELECTIONS: 0. c1t0d0 <FUJITSU-M1606S-512-6234 cyl 3455 alt 2 hd 6 sec 102> /pci@0,0/pci9004,8178@3/cmdk@0,0 1. c1t1d0 <IBM-DFHSS1W!e-4141 cyl 4071 alt 2 hd 4 sec 135> /pci@0,0/pci9004,8178@3/cmdk@1,0 2. c1t2d0 <DEFAULT cyl 2928 alt 2 hd 6 sec 120> /pci@0,0/pci9004,8178@3/cmdk@2,0 Specify disk (enter its number):
Enter the number corresponding to the new drive and the following menu will be displayed:FORMAT MENU: disk - select a disk type - select (define) a disk type partition - select (define) a partition table current - describe the current disk format - format and analyze the disk fdisk - run the fdisk program repair - repair a defective sector label - write label to the disk analyze - surface analysis defect - defect list management backup - search for backup labels verify - read and display labels save - save new disk/partition definitions inquiry - show vendor, product and revision volname - set 8-character volume name5 quit format>
Select the fdisk option and the following menu appears:The recommended default partitioning for your disk is: a 100% "SOLARIS System" partition. To select this, please type "y". To partition your disk differently, type "n" and the "fdisk" program will let you select other partitions.
If you wish to use the entire drive for Oracle Solaris, enter “Y.” This will return you to the format menu. If “N” is entered, the fdisk menu will be displayed.Total disk size is 4073 cylinders Cylinder size is 540 (512 byte) blocks Cylinders Partition Status Type Start End Length ========= ====== ======== ===== === ====== === THERE ARE NO PARTITIONS CURRENTLY DEFINED SELECT ONE OF THE FOLLOWING: 1. Create a partition 2. Change Active (Boot from) partition 3. Delete a partition 4. Exit (Update disk configuration and exit) 5. Cancel (Exit without updating disk configuration) Enter Selection:
Disks on x86-based systems can be divided into 10 slices labeled slice 0 through slice 9. On Oracle Solaris 11/11, slices 0 through 7 are used for the same purposes as disk slices found on SPARC-based systems. Slice 2 represents all of the space within the fdisk partition. As stated earlier, slices 8 and 9 are used for purposes specific to x86-based hardware. You cannot modify slices 8 and 9 using the format utility. Beginning with Oracle Solaris 11.1, the boot disk on an x86-based system can contain an EFI label, and the partition scheme is slightly different than the SPARC system. Slice 0 is reserved for the BIOS_boot information. I’ll describe this more in the next chapter.
Here’s an example of the partition table on an IDE or SATA disk on an x86-based system running Oracle Solaris 11/11, as displayed by the format utility:Part Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks (output omitted) 8 boot wu 0 - 0 7.84MB (1/0/0) 16065 9 alternates wm 1 - 2 15.69MB (2/0/0) 32130
In the previous example, notice that slice 9 is defined and tagged as the alternates slice.
The next example shows the partition table for a SCSI disk attached to an x86-based system. Notice that partition 8 is assigned, but slice 9 is not used:Part Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks (output omitted) 8 boot wu 0 - 0 7.84MB (1/0/0) 16065 9 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0
One more item of note: On standard UFSs, don’t change the size of disk slices that are currently in use. When a disk with existing slices is repartitioned and relabeled, any existing data will be lost. Before repartitioning a disk, first copy all of the data to tape or to another disk.
You can also create the fixed disk partition table on an x86-based system disk from the command line using a single command as follows:# fdisk –B c1t0d0<cr>
The –B option creates a single fixed disk partition that spans the entire disk. The following 36GB disk was formatted using the fdisk –B command:Part Tag Flag Cylinders Size Blocks 0 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 1 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 2 backup wu 0 - 4695 35.97GB (4696/0/0) 75441240 3 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 4 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 5 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 6 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 7 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0 8 boot wu 0 - 0 7.84MB (1/0/0) 16065 9 unassigned wm 0 0 (0/0/0) 0
The fdisk –B command can also be used to convert a disk label from an EFI to SMI.
To verify that a disk contains a fixed disk partition table, issue the following command:
# fdisk -v -W - /dev/rdsk/c3t0d0p<cr>
The system displays the fdisk table for disk c3t0d0:* /dev/rdsk/c3t0d0p0 default fdisk table * Dimensions: * 512 bytes/sector * 63 sectors/track * 255 tracks/cylinder * 2088 cylinders * * systid: * 1: DOSOS12 * 2: PCIXOS * 4: DOSOS16 * 5: EXTDOS * 6: DOSBIG * 7: FDISK_IFS * 8: FDISK_AIXBOOT * 9: FDISK_AIXDATA * 10: FDISK_0S2BOOT * 11: FDISK_WINDOWS * 12: FDISK_EXT_WIN * 14: FDISK_FAT95 * 15: FDISK_EXTLBA * 18: DIAGPART * 65: FDISK_LINUX * 82: FDISK_CPM * 86: DOSDATA * 98: OTHEROS * 99: UNIXOS * 100: FDISK_NOVELL2 * 101: FDISK_NOVELL3 * 119: FDISK_QNX4 * 120: FDISK_QNX42 * 121: FDISK_QNX43 * 130: SUNIXOS * 131: FDISK_LINUXNAT * 134: FDISK_NTFSVOL1 * 135: FDISK_NTFSVOL2 * 165: FDISK_BSD * 167: FDISK_NEXTSTEP * 183: FDISK_BSDIFS * 184: FDISK_BSDISWAP * 190: X86BOOT * 191: SUNIXOS2 * 238: EFI_PMBR * 239: EFI_FS * Id Act Bhead Bsect Bcyl Ehead Esect Ecyl Rsect Numsect 191 128 0 1 1 254 63 1023 16065 33527655 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
When there are multiple disks of the same type (manufacturer, model, size, and geometry) to be sliced, you can save time by copying the label from a source disk over to a target disk without going through all of the steps using the format utility. Use the prtvtoc command to get the partition table from the source disk (c0t0d0) and write the table to the target disk (c0t1d0) using the fmthard command as follows:# prtvtoc /dev/rdsk/c0t0d0s2 | fmthard –s - /dev/rdsk/c0t1d0s2<cr>
Did you know that a full copy of Windows can be installed and run from a USB drive? Microsoft introduced "Windows To Go" with Windows 8 Enterprise and has continued supporting the feature in Windows 10, which can be kept on a pen drive in your pocket as a portable operating system.
This feature is intended as a convenient way for workers to carry their corporate environments with them, but having your own copy of Windows on a thumb drive could be handy for backup purposes, too, or if you frequently use public machines that lack your preferences/applications or that have a restricted OS.
For a long time this was a neat thing you could do with many Linux distros (we plan to cover Linux Live on a separate article soon), but barring driver complications and hardware limitations, a Windows To Go drive should boot from "most" computers.
Booting a Windows 10 "To Go" drive on a modern machine that shipped with Windows 10 is likely to work fine, and because performance if often of the essence, a USB 3.0 port is always desirable. Older systems that originally sold with Vista or XP may work, too, but will have reduced processing power and slower USB ports, meaning they might not meet the minimum hardware requirements, listed below:
Microsoft's To Go documents note that a process called "respecialize" identifies and loads drivers for a specific machine during the first boot-up, along with disabling drivers that aren't required. This profile is remembered and automatically selected on subsequent boot-ups. "In general this feature is reliable and efficient when roaming between PCs of widely varying hardware configurations," the company says, and that's a "generally fair" statement based on their observations from testing.
On the upper side of performance, running Windows 10 To Go from a 32GB USB 3.1 flash drive was quite usable for general computing/basic productivity on an old desktop and a modern laptop. However, they also experienced various complications when creating and booting different versions of Windows To Go...Hardware and software configurations tested
Before they get to creating a Windows To Go drive, here's an overview of the testing that was performed using a variety of hardware and software combinations as well as some recommendations and considerations about configuring a portable Windows drive.
Systems used for testing
As a side note, the desktop also has a USB 3.1 PCIe adapter card, but the motherboard's BIOS can't see or boot from drives attached to this device. This is typical for USB expansion cards and worth mentioning in the event that you attempt to boot from one. Here is more information on how to boot from a USB drive if the subject is unfamiliar to you.
USB drives tested
None of these are officially "certified" for Windows To Go. Besides being fast enough to run an operating system, certified USB drives are designed to appear as fixed instead of removable devices when plugged into Windows. Both types of drives can technically be used for Windows To Go, but only fixed ones will work with the creation tool built into Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise.
We'll elaborate on this later, but note that despite not being an official Windows To Go drive, the Corsair Flash Voyager GTX does appear to Windows as a fixed drive, it certainly meets the speed requirements, and is considerably cheaper than ~$200 "certified" options such as the Kingston Data Traveler Workspace, Kanguru Mobile Workspace and Super Talent Express RC4.
The ancient Patriot drive was included out of curiosity and its performance was as poor as you'd expect. Running Windows 10 on the 16GB USB 2.0 drive wasn't what we'd deem usable and no greater success was had with Windows 7 or 8. Sometimes the initial setup process for Windows 10 would BSOD or fail some other way, and when the process did complete, the performance was slow to say the least, taking upwards of 30 seconds to open a menu for instance -- if it would open at all. This configuration might only be useful for a recovery environment if you had no other option, though a lightweight Linux distro might make more sense on such a slow drive.
Conversely, the faster 200MB/s reads on Samsung's drive proved to be very usable for general computing/basic productivity on a Windows 10 To Go drive, excluding the occasional spot of lag. They purchased this drive at the recommendation of a reader. Again, this model technically isn't certified for Windows To Go and has relatively slow ~30MB/s write performance, which might matter depending on your use case. For reference, the write speed on a conventional hard drive is around 70MB/s.
Considering the fact that Samsung's drive only costs about $10, it's a great budget solution if you want to create a Windows To Go drive for basic use, although be aware that you'll have to use third party tools instead of the one built into Windows 10 -- they cover both in this article.
From what we've seen, USB drives that are certified for WTG tend to have read performance starting around the same speed as Samsung's drive along with equally fast write speeds (~200MB/s). However, as mentioned before, this level of performance is available for considerably less money on "non-certified" USB drives, which can still be used for Windows To Go via third party tools. Microsoft's official utility has other limitations as well and they imagine most of you will wind up using third-party tools.
Here are some additional non-certified drives that they recommend based on their price and advertised speed (the first two are removable and not fixed, the third should be fixed):
Compared to the Samsung drive already discussed, the Kingston unit trades a few MB/s on reads for a few MB/s on writes, which should be better balanced performance-wise, at least on paper anyway.
Like the Flash Voyager GTX they tested, the SanDisk Extreme Pro should eliminate any questions or concerns about the capacity and speed of your Windows To Go drive. These models are around the same cost per gig (prices change a lot) but again, the Corsair drive appears to Windows as fixed and not removable, which is ideal for a Windows To Go drive.
The best value WTG-certified drive they found was the 64GB Kingston DataTraveler Micro Duo USB 3 Type-C (not USB Type-A) for $21, though this drive's 100MB/s reads and 15MB/s writes are slower than the non-certified Kingston drive listed above for $29.
Lastly, if you were thinking about spending $200 on a faster certified Windows To Go drive, the Samsung T5 Portable SSD has 1TB of storage for the same price instead of only 64-128GB, is only a little larger than a thumbdrive, touts read/write rates of up to 540MB/s and should appear to Windows as a fixed device.Windows versions tested as portable
Although the 32-bit version of Windows 10 (build 1803) occupied around 3GB less than the 64-bit version, 64-bit managed to load Wi-Fi and touchpad drivers for their XPS 13 while 32-bit didn't. If they had to guess, you are more likely to encounter 64-bit-capable machines than 32-bit-exclusive machines at this point. There may be more 32-bit systems in existence overall, but most of them are also outdated.
We don't suggest using Windows 7 or Windows 8 To Go unless you're sure they'll boot on the systems you'll be using. Both generations BSOD'd during the initial setup on the XPS 13 9370 and even failed to load on their enthusiast PC from that era. Third-party Windows To Go creation tools also tended to fail more frequently when using Windows 7 and 8 images, which are less supported in general.
Windows 10 64-bit should have the best driver compatibility on the machines that you are most likely to use, especially if they are on the newer side.
Running Windows 10 64-bit from the ~$10 Samsung drive plugged into a USB 3.1 port was particularly usable. Booting the same configuration from USB 2.0 often saw a second or two of unexpected lag when opening menus or applications -- performance that we'd describe as "usable enough" if necessary for creating documents, browsing the web and so on.
Meanwhile, running Windows 10 on the Corsair Voyager was essentially indistinguishable from using Windows on any other SSD thanks to the drive's advertised 440MB/s read & write performance.Creating a Windows To Go USB drive
Windows' built-in tool for making Windows To Go drives is currently supported on Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise and Education builds. And while the creation tool is available on Pro, it still requires an Enterprise image file to create the Windows To Go drive -- among other limitations.
Fortunately, there are several ways to get an Enterprise image. Microsoft offers a direct download of Windows 10 Enterprise ISO for evaluation after you fill out a form, and you can download an Enterprise install.esd file directly from them as well.
You'll also have to extract the install.wim file that's inside a Windows 10 Enterprise ISO (in the Sources folder) or convert install.esd to .wim because the built-in Windows To Go tool only recognizes .wim files, not ISOs or other formats.
Install.wim and .esd are image files with system data that can be used for a Windows installation. You can convert .esd to/from .wim using DISM++, a third-party graphical user interface for Microsoft's DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management), which you can also use directly from the Command Prompt.
Even if you have an Enterprise image however, the native Windows To Go utility won't work with most USB drives, including two out of three of the ones they used for testing. As we've been saying, the built-in tool only works with select USB drives that appear to Windows as "fixed" and not "removable." This is a hardware attribute of the drives.
Historically, the main difference here is that Windows can't mount multiple partitions at once on removable drives (only the first primary partition is mounted), yet Windows installation drives tend to have at least two partitions: one with boot info, another with the operating system. However, as of the Windows 10 Creators Update, the operating system can mount multiple partitions on removable USB drives, and in testing they were also able to create a bootable Windows To Go drive with only one partition.
Regardless, although the 32GB Samsung drive is recognized by the built-in Windows To Go tool, the software explains that the device is removable and thus not compatible.
While the Corsair Voyager isn't certified for WTG either, this drive is fixed instead of removable and does work with native utility, though the software recognizes that the device technically isn't certified. Again, most USB sticks are configured as removable, certified Windows To Go drives are set as fixed, while some non-certified USB drives are also configured as fixed and cost much less than WTG branded drives -- as is the case with their recommended Corsair Voyager XT.
You can determine if a drive is fixed or removable from Disk Management (search Start or Run for diskmgmt.msc). Look at the squares toward the bottom left where the drive descriptions say "Basic" or "Removable."
You can also check by entering these two commands into Command Prompt:
wmiclogicaldisk get caption,drivetype
The output should be a list of drives with numbers next to them: 0 = Unknown, 1 = No Root Directory, 2 = Removable Disk, 3 = Local Disk, 4 = Network Drive, 5 = Compact Disk, 6 = RAM Disk
If you have a fixed USB drive and an install.wim file extracted from an Enterprise ISO, the built-in Windows To Go tool should work largely as you'd expect: you choose a drive, choose an image and wait for the process to complete.
Making a removable drive appear as fixed
With some effort and risk, there are several methods you can try to make your removable drive appear as fixed, though there's not much reason to mess with this setting when third-party Windows To Go tools will work with non-fixed drives.
We aren't recommending these approaches but acknowledge there are various methods around the web that can either flip the removable media bit on your flash drive or install a filter driver on Windows so the OS determines the drive as fixed. Proceed at your own risk, namely a bricked USB drive or blue screening Windows, the latter of which they experienced when testing filter drivers and had to restore from a recovery image.Third-party Windows To Go creation tools
Rufus is probably the most popular tool that can create a Windows To Go drive for Windows 8 and 10, though it may not be so obvious at first glance. Here's a quick guide on the Windows To Go creation process from Rufus 3.3.1. This worked for both the removable and fixed USB drives that they used for testing:
Windows 8, 8.1 and 10 are supported (not Windows 7). However, Rufus 3.3.1 doesn't list the Windows To Go option when using a Windows 10 1809 ISO while an 1803 ISO works fine.
The software might also send a warning if you aren't using a fixed drive, though the resulting portable OS drive still works and in fact Rufus provided the best overall performance of all the Windows To Go creation tools they tested, generally having less errors/failures.
"You are trying to install Windows To Go, but your target drive doesn't have the fixed attribute. Because of this Windows will most likely freeze during boot, as Microsoft hasn't designed it to work with drives that instead have the removable attribute. Do you still want to proceed? Note: The fixed/removable attribute is a hardware property that can only be changed using custom tools from the drive manufacturer. However those tools are almost never provided to the public."
While Rufus is the most commonly available third-party tool they can recommend for creating an "unofficial" Windows To Go drive, the software lacks some features that others provide, such as the ability to export your currently running operating system onto a portable USB drive, though this is generally locked behind a paid license.
Here are many other tools that can make a portable Windows drive:
Note: Perhaps all of the third-party tools do this, but FlashBoot's website mentions that by using registry/driver tweaks the software "will make removable USB thumb drives always appear as fixed to Windows To Go."Creation methods that are more hands-on
Before there were so many third-party tools to build a Windows To Go drive, the commonly recommended approach was to:
Useful downloads for manual creation: DISM++ | GImageX
Preparing the USB drive for Windows To Go from Disk Management or DiskPart is simple: Delete the previous volume(s), create a new volume, format that volume, give the partition a letter and then make that partition active.
At this point, the USB drive should be ready for you to install the operating system files from one of the aforementioned archive files.
Install.wim and install.esd contain compressed OS data that can be used to create a Windows installation or a To Go drive. Your Windows ISO will have one or the other -- you only need one of them and you can convert .wim or .esd files back and forth with DISM++ (GImageX requires a .wim file).
GImageX can apply the install.wim to a USB drive and this software is part of Microsoft's Windows Automated Installation Kit, though the full toolkit is more than 1GB to download whereas GImageX itself is only around 350KB (not MB).
Quick instructions for GImageX: Go to the Apply tab > choose a source install.wim file and the destination USB drive > click Apply.
After copying the system files, you'll also have to create the boot data via Command Prompt using the OS files that you just copied to the portable drive.
Enter the following line from an admin Command Prompt, where G: is your USB drive (this should only have one partition if you followed their steps, but if there is a separate partition for boot files then use that drive letter in place of the second G:).
bcdboot.exe G:\Windows /s G: /f ALL
If those methods aren't hands-on enough, Microsoft provides step-by-step instructions for creating a Windows To Go drive entirely from PowerShell commands, while this guide includes a customizable PowerShell script to automate some of the process along with extra features such as the ability to inject drivers and patches.Export your current OS to a USB drive
This process is automated by many third-party Windows To Go creation tools, but the feature typically costs money. Not wanting to pay for premium licenses, they tested various ways to manually export their current OS from an SSD to a USB drive using a few free utilities and the Disk Management software already on Windows (diskmgmt.msc via Start or Run).
Useful downloads for a manual export: Disk2VHD | HDD Raw Copy Tool
Here's an overview of the process they used to clone their actively running copy of Windows 10 Pro to a thumbdrive:
The USB drive might boot after cloning the VHD, though several times during testing they had to reapply boot information to the drive from an admin Command Prompt. You'll also want Disk Management open to see how many partitions are on the drive and what letters are assigned to them.
Entering the following line into an elevated Command Prompt will apply the boot information (I:\Windows is where the boot data is being copied from while H: is where the data is being copied to).
You'll want to apply the boot data to/from the Windows partition(s) that have been cloned to your USB drive, not C:\Windows. If there are two partitions on your USB drive, apply the boot files to the smaller one, while if there is only a single partition then you can apply the boot data there.
bcdboot.exe I:\Windows /s H: /f ALL
Using "/f ALL" with that command includes files for both UEFI/MBR BIOS.
Throughout testing, they also successfully made Windows To Go drives by manually creating a 500MB partition for boot files on the USB drive along with an OS partition via Disk Management.
Then they mounted the VHD as described but used File Explorer to copy all the files in the VHD to the USB drive's OS partition (this was much slower than cloning with HDD Raw Copy Tool and didn't work as reliably -- you can apply the boot data to the first partition via the method mentioned above).
Note that the free version of WinToUSB automates the creation of a Windows To Go drive using VHD files (VHDX requires a license) and the resulting drive boots directly from the VHD file.
However, their Windows To Go drive loaded to a blue screen error that read "VHD Boot Host Volume Not Enough Space" and required a registry modification to the system inside the virtual hard drive, making as much or more work out of the WTG creation process than their manual method above.
If you are going this route, you might as well change the registry setting on your system before creating the VHD so you don't have to load the registry hive separately afterward. You want to change the following registry key so the DWORD value is 4 instead of 1 to prevent the virtual disk from expanding when mounted.
With this setting applied, the VHD-based drive created by WinToUSB finally booted:
We also noticed that DISM++ can create a .wim file of your currently running copy of Windows with the "System Backup" option, and this could presumably be applied to a USB drive, though they didn't follow through on this method because the operation was taking considerably longer to complete than creating a VHD and cloning that.
Additionally, note that Rufus can copy VHD files to USB drives, though you might have to configure the boot data beyond the command mentioned above (links at the end of the article should get you started).
Also, Disk Management can create an empty VHD file (Action > Create VHD) where you can apply an install.wim file along with boot data, at which point you can clone this virtual drive to a USB drive as a Windows To Go workspace.Best practices and configuration tips
From the user's perspective, the first time Windows To Go is booted it performs some initial configuration before presenting the familiar setup process that you go through on any fresh Windows installation (creating a user account essentially). After that, the operating system loads up as if it were installed on any other drive.
For the most part, this is a full Windows installation, though there are a few differences in configuration and usage practices.Disabled functionality on Windows To Go:
Ideally, network drivers will be automatically loaded when you first boot into Windows To Go, at which point any other drivers can be downloaded from Windows Update or elsewhere.
After installing a few applications on a fresh WTG drive they started receiving notifications from Windows about the 32GB Samsung drive running low on space, though there was still around 10GB free. Considering hibernation and system restore are already disabled by default, there aren't many options for saving space on a stock Windows To Go install.
If storage capacity is a concern, you may want to create your drive with the Enterprise LTSC build of Windows 10, which excludes bloat such as Cortana, the Windows Store and virtually every other pre-installed application -- including Microsoft Edge (we installed Iridium).
We reclaimed an additional 2.55GB of space on a fresh Enterprise LTSC install by compressing the operating system with the following line from an administrator Command Prompt:
While the LTSC build of Windows 10 is already pretty barebones, more built-in applications, drivers, updates and other operating system components can be added or removed to an installation image by loading the install.wim or .esd into NTLite, which can be used to create a Windows 10 ISO as lean as 700MB. If you're going this route, here's another detailed guide on configuring Windows 10 components.
Getting started in NTLite: Add a .wim or .esd file. Right click that file when it appears in the software and choose "load." When the loading process completes, you should see options on the left column.
Depending on the speed of your drive and host system, you might also want to disable animations for menus and windows, which can improve performance on lower-end machines and Windows is visually snappier without these settings enabled.
How to find these performance settings:
The gif above demonstrates the speed difference of opening and closing OpenShell with and without one of these performance animation settings enabled ("Fade or slide menus into view").
After you've configured your Windows To Go installation, you might want to make a backup image of the drive so the operating system can be reapplied with your customizations (hint: Rufus can create an image with the save icon next to your USB drive).Some parting commands and other useful resources:
For the better part of two decades, Mac users have believed themselves largely immune to the trojans, worms, and malware that plague the Windows world. However, Macs have never been fundamentally more secure than any other computer, and now the community’s collective complacency may finally be put to the test.
Computer security firm Dr. Web reports that a recent variant on the Flashback malware has successfully exploited a previously unpatched Java vulnerability to infect as many as 600,000 Mac computers around the world. Although other security firms aren’t publishing estimates of infection rates, companies like Sophos, Intego, and F-Secure back up the alarm cry: the Flashback variant is real, and in some cases it can install itself without any user intervention when a user visits a specially crafted Web page. It’s the sort of doomsday scenario Mac users have never really seen before: malware that can infect a Mac just by loading a Web page.
However, it’s not (currently) the end of the world. Not all Macs are vulnerable, a patch is available, and there are simple things users can do to protect themselves and determine if they’re already infected. But if you’re a Mac user, the current Flashback scare merits a few minutes of your attention, at the very least.Am I Infected?
Users of Intel-based Macs are potentially vulnerable to the Flashback malware. The malware is sophisticated, however, so determining whether a Mac is infected is a tad complicated.
First, launch the Terminal application (in /Applications/Utilities, or just do a Spotlight search for “Terminal” and launch it from there). You’ll see a window with a Unix command line prompt. (It’s OK, it won’t bite.) Copy and paste the following command at the prompt, then press Return.
defaults read /Applications/Safari.app/Contents/Info LSEnvironment
If you see a two-line response and the second line is “The domain/default pair of (/Applications/Safari.app/Contents/Info, LSEnvironment) does not exist,” then copy and paste the following command at the prompt and press Return:
defaults read ~/.MacOSX/environment DYLD_INSERT_LIBRARIES
Again, you want to see a two-line response. If the second line ends with “does not exist,” your Mac is not infected. Type “exit” at the prompt and quit the Terminal application.
If you see responses from either of these commands that indicate data was found, your Mac may be infected, and you’ll want to take steps to remove malware from your system. For the technically proficient (it involves more Terminal commands), F-Secure has posted a set of manual removal instructions. Less technically-inclined may wish to download a free removal tool from Sophos or ClamXav or get someone else to perform the removal. Some of the steps below on how to protect your Mac may also help.How does this version of Flashback work?
Flashback isn’t new: it’s a whole family of malware variants that first appeared back in September 2011. However, the initial versions of the malware appeared as bogus Adobe Flash Player installers. When users loaded a Web page bearing the malware, they’d see something that looked like a Flash error. Clicking it would bring up a prompt to install something that looked like Adobe Flash. (That’s how they name “FlashBack” got attached.) Infection depended on tricking people into downloading, accepting an self-signed certificate purporting to be from Apple, and installing the malware. Trojans that rely on social engineering aren’t anywhere near as common on the Mac as on Windows, but FlashBack wasn’t exactly new under the sun. Unfortunately, Flashback was Mac-savvy: once installed, early versions tried to kill off Apple’s barebones XProtect anti-malware protection system present in Snow Leopard and Lion.
Then, around late February of this year, FlashBack shifted to a new trick, leveraging two vulnerabilities in Java to attempt to install itself without any user intervention at all. Although the threat no longer poses as Adobe Flash, the malware under the hood appears to be the same — and that’s why it’s kept the FlashBack name. The malware installation will prompt for an administrator password, but it doesn’t actually need administrator authorization to infect a Mac — the malware uses a two-pronged approach. The one with the admin password is a bit cleaner; the one without is brute force.
Once on a user’s Mac, if a user gives their admin password, the software checks to see if particular apps (like Apple’s XCode development environment and common antivirus and security tools) are installed; if so, it deletes itself, presumably to avoid detection. Otherwise, the infection connects out to command-and-control servers to download the malware payload: this is the actual FlashBack engine, and the malware operators can change or update it at any time. Current versions of the malware seem focused on collecting passwords for services like Google, PayPal, and banking sites, presumably to get credentials that can be used by cybercriminals to take over email and online accounts or drain bank accounts.
If a user does not give their administrator password, the infection loader tries to insert itself into essentially any app a user might run (with exceptions for Microsoft Word, Office 2008/2011, and Skype, which are apparently incompatible). Once the infection is installed and a user runs an app, it will attempt to connect to the command-and-control servers and download the payload. This infection method is effective, but very crude and likely not compatible with all apps: users might easily notice that some programs start crashing or behaving unpredictably.Didn’t Apple ditch Java?
Apple shipped Java for Intel-based Macs as part of Mac OS 10.4 (Tiger), 10.5 (Leopard), and 10.6 (Snow Leopard); however, Apple deprecated Java as of Mac OS X 10.6.3, and stopped including Java at all with Mac OS 10.7 (Lion). Lion users will only have Java if they upgraded from a previous system to Mac OS X 10.7, or if they explicitly downloaded and installed Java themselves. If Lion users try to run a Java app, Mac OS X will ask if users want to download and install Java from Apple.
Apple’s Java situation is a little peculiar. Apple originally wanted Mac OS X to be a top-tier Java development and runtime platform. The company intrepidly developed its own Java runtime for Mac OS X and had it certified by Sun, Java’s creator. But that pattern meant Apple’s Java always lagged substantially behind official Java releases, and that lag increased substantially when Oracle acquired Sun in 2009. A year later, Apple basically said it wasn’t going to keep updating Java, and removed it from Mac OS X’s default installation. This put Java into limbo on the Mac.
Oracle patched the key Java vulnerability exploited by Flashback on February 14. Apple, on the other hand, only released an updated version of Java with that patch (and eleven other Java security fixes) on April 3 — a lag of six weeks.
The vulnerability isn’t Mac-exclusive: the same Java hole can be used to attack Linux and Windows systems. Mozilla Firefox took the unusual step of blocking older versions of Java in Windows versions of its Web browser to protect users.So how can I protect my Mac?
Here are the simplest ways to protect your Mac from the current Flashback malware threat:If you have Java, update it
Apple has released an updated version of Java that patches the vulnerability exploited by Flashback. If you’re running Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or 10.7 (Lion) and you have Java installed, the update should appear automatically when you run Software Update (Apple menu > Software Update), or you can get it yourself from Apple’s support downloads site (for Snow Leopard or Lion)
If you have an Intel-based Mac and you’re running Mac OX 10.5 or earlier, you can see if you have Java installed using the Terminal. Launch Terminal (in /Applications/Utilities/) and paste in the following command:
If you see the message “No Java runtime support, requesting install,” you do not have Java installed. If you see a version number less than 1.6.0_31 (and you will, if you have any Java at all), your system is potentially vulnerable. Apple won’t be releasing a patched version of Java for Mac OS X 10.5 or earlier. Use the other steps below to protect yourself.Disable Java in Web browsers Java never really took off as a mainstream platform for Web content, so most users don’t need to enable Java in their Web browsers. Disabling Java will block Flashback’s “drive-by” attack, and is the most effective way for earlier users of Mac OS X to protect themselves.
This doesn’t remove Java from your system, it just prevents Web browsers from launching or running Java apps. That’s enough to protect you from the drive-by nature of the Flashback attack. You’ll still be able to run desktop applications that require Java — a common example is things like Citrix’s GoToMeeting — but you may find you need to selectively re-enable Java in a browser to log in to services or download updates. In that case, you can selectively re-enable Java to get an app running, then disable it again when you’re done.Consider antivirus software If you’re in a situation where you can’t update Java or can’t disable a vulnerable version of Java, you should consider antivirus software to protect your Mac. ClamXav makes a free antivirus package for Mac users; similarly, Sophos has a Mac antivirus package free for non-commercial use. Commercial antivirus packages are also available for Mac OS X from the likes of Intego and Symantec; F-Secure also has a beta Mac OS X security product. Does your Mac need antivirus software?
The days of the Mac’s immunity from malware appear to be at an end: last year saw the MacDefender scare (and Apple’s brief tit-for-tat battle with its perpetrators), and now there’s a genuine drive-by infection threat to the Mac — even though it doesn’t rely on technology exclusive to Mac OS X. Although the malware situation on Mac OS X is still several orders of magnitude less severe that that for Windows, the writing is on the wall: as the Mac platform gains adherents, it’s going to start attracting sophisticated malware authors.
What about GateKeeper, the new protection technology that’s due to arrive with Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion? Mac user shouldn’t rely on GateKeeper to protect them: the technology will enable users to decide they only want to run applications that come from Apple and/or the Mac App store, and developers who have identified themselves to Apple, or (like now) run any application from any source. GateKeeper will not protect Mac users from vulnerabilities in applications or system components — which means a problem with a Web browser plug-in or a low-level component like Java is out of GateKeeper’s purview — and Mountain Lion users would be just as vulnerable to something like Flashback’s drive-by attack as anyone else.
For the time being, it’s probably too early to recommend all Mac OS X users install and run antivirus software: the best case for running AV software on a Mac is still to clean Windows-based viruses and malware out of files and documents Mac users might be passing along to hapless Windows users. But the day may come — soon — when the Mac malware universe warrants widespread use of high-quality antivirus software.
Lead image on Mac screen via Sebastian Kaulitzki/Shutterstock
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