All about OBP in Sparc Servers

Frequently used commands in OBP:

#1 ok setenv auto-boot? false

to verify use “ok printenv auto-boot?

When you need trouble shoot solaris server at OK prompt, you have to disable the auto boot feature

#2 ok banner
Sun Ultra 5/10 UPA/PCI (UltraSPARC-IIi 333MHz), No Keyboard
OpenBoot 3.15, 128 MB memory installed, Serial #number.
Ethernet address number, Host ID: number.

You can find OBP version, Server model, Serial number, Host ID and Ether net mac address from Banner command

Note: Mac address displayed is Port 0 (zero) of on board network card. For Example I have quad port onboard NIC card and two Quad Port PCI-e Cards. Out of total 12 mac address, one displayed here is from onboard zero port. This clarity will help whe you are troubleshooting “ok boot net – install” trouble shoot errors.

#3 ok setenv local-mac-address? true

When you configure IPMP you have to set local-mac-address? to True, then only each NIC card use it’s Mac address which is very important for IPMP.

#4 set device alias and enable nvram

ok nvalias <alias> <device-path>

ok nvunalias <alias> <device-path>


{0} ok nvalias bootdisk /pci@400/pci@1/pci@0/pci@4/scsi@0/disk@w5xxxc500xxxxxxfd5,0:a

{0} ok setenv use-nvramrc? true

{0} ok setenv boot-device bootdisk

These two are required to set alis names to the disk and network devices. As we have many disks in system, this will help to set alias as bootdisk and mirrordisk to identify the boot disk and mirror disk  from OK promt among many disk devices.

Note: After using nvunalias command if you refer devalias command it will still show the alias details, when you run reset-all, then it will not show them.

You can do this from OS using eeprom

eeprom nvramrc=”devalias bootdisk /pci@400/pci@1/pci@0/pci@4/scsi@0/disk@wx000cx00xxxxxfd5,0:a devalias mirrordisk /pci@400/pci@2/pci@0/pci@4/scsi@0/disk@wx000cx00xxxxxxxx,0:a

eeprom use-nvramrc?=true

#5 Verify network interface connectivity and check MAC address of the NIC ports

{2} ok watch-net-all


/pci@1f,700000/network@1: link down


/pci@1d,700000/pci@2/pci@4/network@2: 100 Mbps half duplex link up

Watch ethernet packets

‘.’ is a good packet and ‘X’ is a bad packet

Press any key to stop

using network device alias

ok> cd /net1

ok> .properties

Using Network device physical path

or cd /pci@1d,700000/pci@2/pci@4/network@2

ok> .properties

 #6 ok show-devs

will list all the devices

#7 ok setenv diag-switch? true

ok setenv diag-level max (available diag levels are: net/max/min/menus)

Other test options available at OK prompt are
probe-scsi (use show-devs for PCI devices)

probe-scsi-all (use show-devs for PCI devices)
test net (tests primary network controller)

test-all (tests all devices)

watch-net and watch-net-all (for all interface)

#8 boot options

ok boot  (boots with default device mentioned in “boot-device”)

ok boot -s (boot to single user mode for maintenance)

ok boot net – install (used to boot through jumpstart boot servers for building OS through jumpstart)

ok boot net:speed=100,duplex=full,dhcp – install (Jumpstart boot through dhcp with preferred network settings instead of rarp , this removes the limitation of both boot servers and client in the same LAN)

ok boot -a (interactive boot, used to supply alternate boot files like /etc/system if default one is corrupted)

ok boot -r (reconfigure reboot, new device added to the sytem, this will create device files in OS)

ok boot disk2 kernel/sparcv9/unix -asv ( Boot single user, interactive, 64-bit and from disk device disk2. I never used this)

ok boot -F failsafe (I beleive it’s only for solaris 10 and above with SMF implementation this maintenance mode option available and saved Sys Admins from searching for boot CD or troubleshooting jumpstart to boot through net to go to maintenance mode for resetting root password or doing fsck on boot file systems)

boot -v or boot -m verbose (to see more messages on boot)

ok boot -m milestone=none (This command instructs the svc.startd daemon to temporarily disable all services and start sulogin on the console)

Reference web links about OBP:

Author: rajukv

Hadoop(BigData) Architect and Hadoop Security Architect can design and build hadoop system to meet various data science projects.

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