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This page provides the latest information on patching. See the How To and Resources pages for all our patching documentation for Solaris users with various levels of patching experience.
See the official Oracle Support Page
Do you want to see how future patch architecture is changing? The Image Packaging System, pkg(5), is a framework that provides for software lifecycle management such as installation, upgrade, and removal of packages.
From the architect, Stephen Hahn, a summary of how Indiana's Image Packaging System (IPS) changes patching:
The packaging design I'm working on has support for management of "images", which are a combination of the basic idea of a boot environment with some amount of linkage or sharing, as in zones. The system allows various upgrade paths to be restricted, so that you can be on a "fixes only" branch, on a "features and fixes" branch, or on the developer release. You could, in principle, freeze or pin a subset of the packages, and the system would work out what packages would still work given those fixed versions, but we will probably encourage use of some metacluster-like group packages. On the equivalent of patching, the idea is that new branches of the existing repositories would be created for each of the affected packages.