Patch Check Advanced (PCA) generates lists
of installed and missing patches for Oracle Solaris systems and
optionally downloads patches. It resolves dependencies
between patches and installs them in correct order. It can be
the only tool you ever need for patch management, be it on a single machine
or a complete network. Just one perl script, it doesn't need
compilation nor installation, and it doesn't need root permissions
It works on all versions of Solaris, both SPARC and x86.
Sun/Oracle have offered various tools in the past for patch analysis
and management, e.g.
PatchDiag, PatchCheck, PatchPro, smpatch,
Sun Update Connection.
None of them really made me happy - I wanted a small, fast, portable
and versatile tool.
So I started to implement my own application, which was published first
in 2003. It got (and still gets!) refined and enhanced, supported by the
feedback and contributions of its users. Without exaggeration, PCA now
is the best patch tool for Oracle Solaris. See
what others say about PCA.
A lot of care is taken to guarantee that PCA doesn't omit
patches which might apply to a system. This is the
most important design principle. I'm manually checking that
it's fulfilled on a daily basis.
Comments are welcome - send them to the
PCA mailing list.
I'm interested in experiences with PCA on older releases of
Solaris (SPARC and x86), problems you encountered, proposals
for enhancements, etc.
- Easily understandable and configurable format for the patch report,
containing Recommended/Security status and age of a patch.
- Shows all missing Recommended/Security patches in one concise list.
Only patches for packages which are actually installed are listed.
Obsolete/Bad patches are ignored. Output can be formatted in HTML,
with links to patch READMEs and downloads
- It analyzes the patch dependencies, and lists
required patches in the correct order for installation.
- If requested, it downloads patches from Oracle's patch server and installs
them. One patch, groups of patches, or all missing patches.
Start it, let it run, and return to a fully patched system.
- Set up a local patch server and speed up downloads tremendously.
- It's fast: Generating a complete patch report takes just a few
- It's small: One file, ca. 4000 lines, both code and documentation.
Makes understanding and modifying the code for your own needs easy.
- It can assist in staying informed about firmware and other
- All the information about a machine needed for analysis can be read
from files, so you can use PCA even if it doesn't run on the target
- There's an auto update mechanism to keep PCA itself up-to-date.
If you want to share your opinion with Oracle, please post to the
blog entry about patch automation tools
Usage of PCA is free of charge for private, educational and commercial
use. No responsiblity is taken for any damage caused by using PCA. You may
modify PCA's source code to fit your local needs. If sharing modified
versions of PCA with others, keep a reference to the original
author and distribution site.
Commercial distribution of either the original or modified versions
of PCA or including PCA into commercial products is only allowed
if explicitly permitted by the original author.