This failed on the first package yielding an error (I believe it was SUNWgzipS or
something like that - which we don't have installed).
Second, I tried running install_cluster -R /.alt.sol10u6, but this also failed due to
the currently running OS not being like the one I'm trying to patch.
Do I misunderstand something about applying patches to alternate roots of offline
system images? Or do the patch tools' authors? ;)
In the end, just in case somebody needs to do this after all, here's how I solved
the quest: I booted sol10u6 failsafe mode. The "normal" mode couldn't mount its
ZFS root after "luupgrade" from OpenSolaris to sol10u6 (in short, DON'T!), so I
went into trying patching in the first place.
In the Failsafe mode I mounted all the filesystem hierarchy of sol10u6 alternate
BE under /a, and mounted the unpacked patch cluster dataset (/export/distr).
While running "install_cluster -R /a" I still ran into problems with it tryng to access hardcoded paths like /var/sadm (which are on the read-only failsafe root FS).
I edited the script and replaced all references to /var, making them /a/var (more
cleanly they should take the value of -R parameter), and successfully applied
the patch cluster.
One "bootadm update-archive -R /a", and I was on my way on rebooting the
PS: the resulting mix of osol drivers and sol10 binaries still failed to boot, but
that's another story I finally fixed by cloning another server's FS.
The morale of my story is, IMHO, install_cluster should not use hardcoded
paths like /var/sadm, but it should rather prepend the alternate root path value
(if provided) to them.