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This page describes the most standard manual installation of OpenIndiana using the interactive installer. For specific use-cases there are other advanced installation methods, described on other pages of this Wiki and blog posts around the Internet.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Installing OpenIndiana

OpenIndiana runs on a PC (32 or 64-bit) with at least 768 megabytes (MB) of RAM (1 gigabyte (GB) recommended), and 4 gigabytes of available disk space (2 gigabytes for the server install). You can also use virtual machine software such as VirtualBox, Parallels or VMware.


To create a bootable USB device, you must use a USB storage device exactly 1 gigabyte (GB) or larger.
To create a live USB with Windows, use the OpenSolaris Live USB Creator.
To create a live USB with illumos, Solaris or OpenSolaris, you may use the usbcopy tool.
To create a live USB on any Unix-like system (including OS X):

  1. Download both the standard live USB file
    1. For OpenIndiana images before OpenIndiana Hipster 2016.10 snapshot you should have used special header file:
      1. For USB images of 1GB or less (e.g. the Text Installer), use the 1G.header file.
      2. For USB images exceeding 1GB (e.g. the Live Installer), be sure to use the 2G.header file.
  2. Locate the path to your USB storage device.
    • This will typically be /dev/rdsk/c*t*d0p0 on illumos/Solaris (rmformat -l), /dev/sd* on Linux (fdisk -l), /dev/da* on FreeBSD (camcontrol devlist), or /dev/disk* on OS X (diskutil list).
    • Use the whole device, not including a partition or slice number (sda, not sda1; c0t0d0p0, not c0t0d0p1).
      • In illumos, the whole disk device name is depending on partition type; on x86, the whole disk name ends with p0, in case the GPT (EFI) partition, the whole disk device name ends with dX, on sparc, the disk has usually VTOC partition and whole disk device name usually ends with s2. Note, if on x86 MBR+VTOC is used, then the s2 device is addressing Solaris2 MBR partition, not whole disk.
    • Make sure you identify the correct storage device, as any data on the device will be erased.
  3. Desktops may automatically mount removable devices. Make sure no filesystems located on the device are mounted prior to the next step.
    • Select any desktop icons for the USB device and issue an Eject or Unmount command.
    • Use the mount command to list mounted filesystems. If any filesystems are located on the USB storage device, they must be unmounted.
    • Use umount <path> to unmount a filesystem, or rmumount <path> on illumos/Solaris, and diskutil unmountDisk <path> on OS X.
  4. Run the following command (as root or with appropriate privileges): dd if=<live USB image file> of=<path to raw USB storage device>
    1. Note, that for OpenIndiana images before 2016.10 you should have used special header file: cat <1G or 2G header> <live USB image file> | dd bs=1024k of=<path to raw USB storage device>
  • Boot your computer with the medium inserted. You may have to change the boot device order in your BIOS configuration.


    In VirtualBox 3.2 or later, "Use host I/O cache" must be enabled in the emulated storage controller used by the virtual machine to successfully boot OpenIndiana.

  • When you see a menu, press Enter to start OpenIndiana on your computer. As it runs, you will be prompted with a few questions.
  • You should eventually be presented with a desktop. You can use the Device Driver Utility to check if your hardware requires additional drivers.
  • Click on Install OpenIndiana to permanently install OpenIndiana on your computer.

If you do not see a menu after booting your computer with the DVD or USB device, and instead see some text and a "grub>" prompt, there may be an error in your copy of the installer, or it was created incorrectly.


If you see a "login:" prompt after selecting your keyboard and language and no desktop appears after several seconds, there may be a problem with the drivers for your graphics hardware. Please let us know if this happens. Include error messages you see on the console, and the output of the command svcs -xv and the contents of the file /var/log/Xorg.0.log if possible.

The login for the text session is username jack, password jack. The installer is graphical and requires X11, although it is possible to use it over a network with SSH X forwarding if you enable SSH. For administrative access, prepend your commands with pfexec.