Welcome to the Solaris native minion installation guide. This installation guide explains the process for installing a Salt native minion on Solaris UNIX systems. This guide is intended for system administrators with the general knowledge and experience required in the field.

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What are Salt native minions?

Salt can target network-connected devices through Salt proxy minions. Proxy minions are a Salt feature that enables controlling devices that, for whatever reason, cannot run the standard salt-minion service. Examples include network gear that has an API but runs a proprietary OS, devices with limited CPU or memory, or devices that could run a minion but, for security reasons, will not.

Salt native minions are packaged to run directly on specific devices, removing the need for proxy minions running elsewhere on a network. Native minions have several advantages, such as:

  • Performance boosts: With native minions, Salt doesn’t need to rely on constant SSH connections across the network. There is also less burden on the servers running multiple proxy minions.

  • Higher availability: For servers running multiple proxy minions, server issues can cause connection problems to all proxy minions being managed by the server. Native minions remove this potential point of failure.

  • Improved scalability: When adding devices to a network that are supported by native minions, you aren’t required to deploy proxy minions on separate infrastructure. This reduces the burden of horizontally or vertically scaling infrastructure dedicated to proxy minions.


For an overview of how Salt works, see Salt system architecture.

Before you start#

Before installing the Solaris native minion:

  • Ensure that you have sufficient privileges to install packages on the Solaris system.
  • Check that your Solaris UNIX system is supported. See Solaris for more information.
  • Ensure that ports 4505 and 4506 are open on the applicable Solaris UNIX systems.

Salt uses ports 4505 and 4506 for outbound communication from the master to the minions. The Solaris native minion uses a direct connection to the Solaris UNIX system and uses the network interfaces for communication. For that reason, ports 4505 and 4506 need to be open on the appropriate network interfaces.

Install Salt on Solaris#

The Solaris native minion package installs:

  • The salt-minion service
  • The salt-call service


The salt-ssh and salt-proxy services are not installed with this package.

Salt minion package installation#

The steps to install the Solaris native minion differ for Solaris 10 vs. Solaris 11. Ensure that you are using the correct set of instructions for your system.

If installing on a virtual machine, consult the documentation for your hypervisor as the commands might differ slightly.

To install the package on Solaris 10:

  1. Ensure that you have sufficient privileges to install packages on the Solaris system.

  2. In the terminal on the Solaris device, add the packages from the uncompressed tarball using the following command (including the dot):

      pkgadd -d .

To install the package on Solaris 11:

  1. Ensure that you have sufficient privileges to install packages on the Solaris system.

  2. In the terminal on the Solaris device, install Salt from the p5p archive. For example:

    pkg install -g file:///<path to p5p archive>/salt-|solaris-version|_solaris11_sparc.p5p  library/python/salt-minion
  3. Use the following command to disable the salt-minion service, which is automatically started when installed:

    svcadm disable salt-minion

Configure and test the Solaris native minion#

To configure the Solaris native minion to connect with its Salt master:

  1. Edit the /opt/local/etc/salt/minion file to update the minion configuration with your environment’s specific details, such as the master’s IP address, the minion ID, etc. For example, to set the minion name:

    id: your-solaris-minion-name
  2. Edit the file to indicate the IP address of the master that is managing this minion. For example:

  3. Start the Solaris native minion with the following command:

    svcadm enable salt-minion
  4. Once the Solaris native minion has been started and is running, you can use the command salt-key to verify the master has received a request for the minion key.

  5. On the master, accept the minion’s key with the following command, replacing the placeholder test with the correct minion name:

    salt-key -y -a your-solaris-minion-name
  6. After waiting a small period of time, verify the connectivity between the master and the Solaris native minion using simple commands. For example, try running the following commands:

    salt your-minion-name test.versions
    salt your-minion-name grains.items
    salt your-minion-name 'ls -alrt /'
    salt-call --local test.versions

You can now use the Solaris native minion. See Using the Solaris native minion for more information.

Salt minion package removal#

To uninstall the Salt minion package on Solaris 10, run the following command:

pkgrm salt

To uninstall the Salt minion salt package on Solaris 11, run the following command:

pkg uninstall library/python/salt-minion

Using the Solaris native minion#

You can access the Salt command line interface on the Solaris native minion using executable Python scripts. These scripts execute with environmental variable overrides for library and Python paths. The wrapper scripts are located in the /usr/bin/salt-call and /usr/bin/salt-minion respectively.


The Solaris native minion 3005.1 currently has scripts for:

  • salt-minion
  • salt-call

Salt command line functionality is available through the use of these scripts.

To start the minion:

svcadm enable salt-minion

To stop the minion:

svcadm disable salt-minion

You can also start the minion as a daemon using the following command:

[/usr/bin/]salt-minion -d