yum command: Update / Install Packages Under Redhat Enterprise / CentOS Linux Version 5.x

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How do I use yum command to update and patch my Red hat Enterprise Linux / CentOS Linux version 5.x server via RHN / Internet? Can I use up2date command under RHEL 5?

up2date command was part of RHEL v4.x or older version. You need to use yum command to update and patch the system using RHN or Internet. Use yum command to install critical and non-critical security updates as well as binary packages. Login as the root user to install and update the system.

Task: Register my system with RHN

To register your system with RHN type the following command and just follow on screen instructions (CentOS user skip to next step):
# rhn_register

WARNING! These examples only works with RHEL / CentOS Linux version 5.x or above. For RHEL 4.x and older version use up2date command.

Task: Display list of updated software (security fix)

Type the following command at shell prompt:
# yum list updates

Task: Patch up system by applying all updates

To download and install all updates type the following command:
# yum update

Task: List all installed packages

List all installed packages, enter:
# rpm -qa
# yum list installed

Find out if httpd package installed or not, enter:
# rpm -qa | grep httpd*
# yum list installed httpd

Task: Check for and update specified packages

# yum update {package-name-1}
To check for and update httpd package, enter:
# yum update httpd

Task: Search for packages by name

Search httpd and all matching perl packages, enter:
# yum list {package-name}
# yum list {regex}
# yum list httpd
# yum list perl*

Sample output:

Loading "installonlyn" plugin
Loading "security" plugin
Setting up repositories
Reading repository metadata in from local files
Installed Packages
perl.i386                                4:5.8.8-10.el5_0.2     installed       
perl-Archive-Tar.noarch                  1.30-1.fc6             installed       
perl-BSD-Resource.i386                   1.28-1.fc6.1           installed       
perl-Compress-Zlib.i386                  1.42-1.fc6             installed       
perl-DBD-MySQL.i386                      3.0007-1.fc6           installed       
perl-DBI.i386                            1.52-1.fc6             installed       
perl-Digest-HMAC.noarch                  1.01-15                installed       
perl-Digest-SHA1.i386                    2.11-1.2.1             installed       
perl-HTML-Parser.i386                    3.55-1.fc6             installed   
perl-libxml-perl.noarch                  0.08-1.2.1             base            
perl-suidperl.i386                       4:5.8.8-10.el5_0.2     updates 

Task: Install the specified packages [ RPM(s) ]

Install package called httpd:
# yum install {package-name-1} {package-name-2}
# yum install httpd

Task: Remove / Uninstall the specified packages [ RPM(s) ]

Remove package called httpd, enter:
# yum remove {package-name-1} {package-name-2}
# yum remove httpd

Task: Display the list of available packages

# yum list all

Task: Display list of group software

Type the following command:
# yum grouplist

Installed Groups:
   Engineering and Scientific
   MySQL Database
   System Tools
   Text-based Internet
   Legacy Network Server
   DNS Name Server
   Dialup Networking Support
   FTP Server
   Network Servers
   Legacy Software Development
   Legacy Software Support
   Development Libraries
   Web Server
   Printing Support
   Mail Server
   Server Configuration Tools
   PostgreSQL Database
Available Groups:
   Administration Tools
   Development Tools
   GNOME Software Development
   X Software Development
   GNOME Desktop Environment
   Authoring and Publishing
   Games and Entertainment
   Java Development
   X Window System
   Windows File Server
   KDE Software Development
   KDE (K Desktop Environment)
   Sound and Video
   FreeNX and NX
   News Server
   Yum Utilities
   Graphical Internet

Task: Install all the default packages by group

Install all ‘Development Tools’ group packages, enter:
# yum groupinstall "Development Tools"

Task: Update all the default packages by group

Update all ‘Development Tools’ group packages, enter:
# yum groupupdate "Development Tools"

Task: Remove all packages in a group

Remove all ‘Development Tools’ group packages, enter:
# yum groupremove "Development Tools"

Task: Install particular architecture package

If you are using 64 bit RHEL version it is possible to install 32 packages:
# yum install {package-name}.{architecture}
# yum install mysql.i386

Task: Display packages not installed via official RHN subscribed repos

Show all packages not available via subscribed channels or repositories i.e show packages installed via other repos:
# yum list extras
Sample output:

Loading "installonlyn" plugin
Loading "security" plugin
Setting up repositories
Reading repository metadata in from local files
Extra Packages
DenyHosts.noarch                         2.6-python2.4          installed       
VMwareTools.i386                         6532-44356             installed       
john.i386                             installed       
kernel.i686                              2.6.18-8.1.15.el5      installed       
kernel-devel.i686                        2.6.18-8.1.15.el5      installed       
lighttpd.i386                            1.4.18-1.el5.rf        installed       
lighttpd-fastcgi.i386                    1.4.18-1.el5.rf        installed       
psad.i386                                2.1-1                  installed       
rssh.i386                                2.3.2-1.2.el5.rf       installed  

Task: Display what package provides the file

You can easily find out what RPM package provides the file. For example find out what provides the /etc/passwd file:
# yum whatprovides /etc/passwd
Sample output:

Loading "installonlyn" plugin
Loading "security" plugin
Setting up repositories
Reading repository metadata in from local files

setup.noarch                             2.5.58-1.el5           base            
Matched from:

setup.noarch                             2.5.58-1.el5           installed       
Matched from:

You can use same command to list packages that satisfy dependencies:
# yum whatprovides {dependency-1} {dependency-2}
Refer yum command man page for more information:
# man yum

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. He has worked with global clients and in various industries, including IT, education, defense and space research, and the nonprofit sector. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+.

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78 comment

  1. Hello there

    Hi am having problem entering graphic mode in RHEL 5.0,
    When am booting into os, It coming up with an error
    Cant find x-server, Try to install x-server….
    and then it going to text mode for a min and throwing that error
    Can any one help me plssss

    thnx in advance

    1. i found that something u have entered in inittab,u just change the appropriate run level and change to x-server environment…..the locaton of intitab is vim /etc/inttab…

  2. Hello there

    Hi am having problem entering graphic mode in RHEL 5.0,
    When am booting into os, It coming up with an error
    Cant find x-server, Try to install x-server….
    and then it going to text mode for a min and throwing that error
    Can any one help me plssss

    thnx in advance

      1. hi puskhar kumar,
        if you want to install linux or fedora or centos first of all you set a bois setup to first set a cdrom to select for booting process then restart your system and then press f9 then automatically to process for a next version installation.

  3. It is possible to configure yum to install rpms from local media, using the following method:

    1. Create a new repository file: /etc/yum.repos.d/local.repo

    2. Type the following:

    name=Red Hat Local Repository

    The baseurl should be web-encoded (ie space=%20) point to the local media which contains the rpms to install and any dependent rpms, and the folder repodata/ with repomd.xml and TRANS.TBL.

    3. Finally, run (as root):

    yum install [package]

  4. hi,
    this is to better commands of other command
    bcoz another commands are so hard it is true
    and this commands is very simple .

    so thanks for this commands,
    bye tc , have good day all .

  5. i have a problem about a ubuntu (linux),
    the error show, when i insert a disk of film in dvdrom then the error shows

    the PlayBack of this movie requires a VCD protocol source plugin which is not installed

    plz give me a solucation about this error.

  6. 4 yum installation
    stp1- cp /etc/yum.repos.d/rhel(press tab) /etc/yum.repos.d/Server.repo
    stp2- vi /etc/yum.reppos.d/Server.repo
    stp3- in 3rd lin after ftp giv //ur machine ip/pub/Server (becz my Server is copy 2 pub)
    stp4- createrepo -v /var/ftp/pub/Server
    stp5- service vsftpd restart
    stp6- yum update
    thank u i am 2nd year eng student

  7. i have this error when instaling yum

    # yum update
    There was a problem importing one of the Python modules
    required to run yum. The error leading to this problem was:

    No module named sqlitecachec

    Please install a package which provides this module, or
    verify that the module is installed correctly.

    It’s possible that the above module doesn’t match the
    current version of Python, which is:
    2.4.3 (#1, Jan 14 2008, 18:32:40)
    [GCC 4.1.2 20070626 (Red Hat 4.1.2-14)]

    If you cannot solve this problem yourself, please go to
    the yum faq at:

  8. Hi hello, this is phanindra
    I am having dell latitude 510 lappy and having a problem in running wifi, so can u help me hou to install the wifi drivers tat r compatible to my machine

  9. I’m having problem in installing VLC media player can someone help me I’ll gratefull to the person.
    I’ve even configured YUM but still I think there is something to know that I don’t so please some body help me ………….

    Ashish Bachchan

  10. Hi all,

    I have a problem with installation of an software. I have installed on my laptop CentOS5.4 with all repositories activate (I think) and yum upgrade and update. I working in engineering domain, so I am curious how works ANSYS 11 on Linux 64 biti (at my work I use ANSYS on windows).
    I installed first on Ubuntu9.10 (unfortunately not all modules works fine) and installation it was ok, and I tested and everything works done. After that I try to install it on CentOS because this software is made to works done only on Rhel platform (.rpm). So, I encountered the next message, which I don’t understand what means and why appear:

    >bash: ./INSTALL: /bin/sh: bad interpreter: Permission denied

    after that I try:

    >rpm -i INSTALL

    after that I try:

    >sudo ./INSTALL
    sudo: unable to execute ./INSTALL: Success

    I waiting yours answer or opinion reffering to my problem, because I’m very curious.

    Best regards

    1. I think you’ll find that the INSTALL file is a text file that gives you instructions on how to compile, then install the program from source.
      This install method typically involves:
      >./make install

      If you have the rpm available, use the “ls” command to search the relavant directory and find the *.rpm file. That’s what you’ll want to run the “rpm -i” command with.

      As far as the INSTALL file: instead of trying to execute it, use your favorite editor to view it, or use the cat command:
      > cat ./INSTALL |less

      1. Just to add a side note, you don’t use “./” with make and make install, you should only use it with configure, so it would be
        # ./configure
        # make
        # make install

  11. It’s not a bad idea to run the command:

    # yum check-updates

    This will let you know which packages are due to be updated without actually running the update. Saves a bit of bother if there is a major upgrade about to happen.

    1. @Feck McConnel
      You can try issuing 3rd party repositories on RH/CentOS such as EPEL, RPMFusion are two good choices, these might have more recent version of your software but remember that RH/CentOS are more geared for stability rather than bleeding edge. In that case you can try Fedora.

  12. Why can’t RedHat make YUM work right? and why can’t they call it something a little more descriptive? Linux is crap! Program names don’t even describe what a program does! How can anything be more non-userfriendly!

  13. Hello! I need to install a specific version of packages, for example, if the last version of “seamonkey” is “seamonkey-1.0.9-0.57.el3.i386.rpm” I need to install seamonkey-1.0.9-0.45.el3.i386.rpm, is that possible? obviously I know which is the number of the previous version.
    Excuse me for my english.

    Thanks so much

  14. Hi,
    I am using CentOS5.5 and I want to install few packages through yum.

    like gnome-libs,XFree-libs etc. But when I run “yum install gnome-libs” it gives no
    package available.

    Can you suggest me how to update yum to make these package available?


      1. I use this command to install screen on centos
        ” yum whatprovides screen”
        but it shows this error :
        ” Warning: 3.0.x versions of yum would erroneously match against filenames.
        You can use “*/screen” and/or “*bin/screen” to get that behaviour
        No Matches found”
        I use ” yum whatprovides */screen ”
        ” ncurses-5.5-24.20060715.i386 : A terminal handling library
        Repo : Rocks-5.4
        Matched from:
        Filename : /usr/share/terminfo/s/screen”

        and something like this, but when I type “screen”, it says :
        “-bash: screen: command not found”

        I use this command too “yum whatprovides */bin/screen ”
        “Rocks-5.4/filelists | 1.4 MB 00:00
        No Matches found”

        Please help me.
        Thanks in advance.

  15. hi all,

    I have installed centos 5.4, after install i have wired internet connection, but I want to use, my wireless adapter. I go to System>Administration>Networks and have it activited, but it has a message, error in wireless request “set encode” (8B2A). And it can’t determine IP address. Do you think it has to do with the driver of the wireless card? how to install them?
    thank you in advance. I really need your help.. :D


  16. Hi,
    I am using RHEL 5 and I want to install few packages whit yum.

    like vlc media player , real player etc. But when I run “yum install *vlc*nad *realplayer * it gives
    no package available.

  17. hi
    i’m install netconfig with using of yum : yum install netconfig.
    but i cant use netconfig and i dont find related file.i want to know how to i can use netconfig.
    thank so much and excuse for bad language.

  18. hi
    i’m install vlc player with using rpm commands but i can’t install vlc because this error has occured so pls help me
    [[email protected] ~]# rpm -ivh /home/senthil/Desktop/gstreamer-ffmpeg-0.10.11-1.fc14.src.rpm
    warning: /home/senthil/Desktop/gstreamer-ffmpeg-0.10.11-1.fc14.src.rpm: Header V3 RSA/SHA256 Signature, key ID 865cc9ea: NOKEY
    1:gstreamer-ffmpeg warning: user mockbuild does not exist – using root
    warning: group mockbuild does not exist – using root
    ########################################### [100%]
    warning: user mockbuild does not exist – using root
    warning: group mockbuild does not exist – using root

    1. I don’t see any errors, I only see warnings with explanations afterwards of what is happening instead of the default.
      (e.g. the user ‘mockbuild’ not existing, so it’s using root)
      Your (source) RPM has been installed. You might want to install the binary RPM, however. The source RPM is only going to contain the source code, which isn’t going to help you unless you’re compiling it for some custom use.

  19. I have not worked with Red Hat in quite a while I am glad I found this site it gave me a little refresher on update commands. This helped me complete my task that I was working on. Thank You

  20. Hi,

    yum repolist command was working fine till recently. But, all of a sudden it is not working. it is giving an error

    OpenSSL.SSL.Error: [(‘SSL routines’, ‘SSL23_GET_SERVER_HELLO’, ‘unknown protocol’)]

    I am able to ping rhn.redhat.com from the system.

    What may be the problem ? pls. guide.

  21. Hello frinds
    I am having problem with my wifi connection. It is of Broadcom. but Linux Enterprize 5 always give error for dhcp at startup and i have tried a lot to configure my wifi setting manually but i am not successful in doing so. so please help me , i am new to linux and i am self lerner

  22. I am facing lot of problem in centos I installed 4.8 server but problem is can’t update any package and can’t go forward for GUI mode. Please help me how to do resolve this problem.

  23. Hi guys.

    I’m learning Linux and i have two users in my rhel6 root and redhat users.
    i want to give superuser power to redhat user, how to do it???

    please help me.

  24. when tried this command yum list extras.Its showing as

    [[email protected] pavan]# yum list extras
    Loading “rhnplugin” plugin
    Loading “installonlyn” plugin
    This system is not registered with RHN.
    RHN support will be disabled.
    Setting up repositories
    http://apt.sw.be/redhat/el5Server/en/i386/dag/repodata/repomd.xml: [Errno 14] HTTP Error 404: Not Found
    Trying other mirror.
    Error: Cannot open/read repomd.xml file for repository: dag

    can i know the problem please

  25. yum install gnuchess
    Loaded plugins: aliases, changelog, downloadonly, kabi, presto, product-id, refresh-packagekit, security, subscription-manager,
    : tmprepo, verify, versionlock
    Updating certificate-based repositories.
    Loading support for Red Hat kernel ABI
    Setting up Install Process
    No package gnuchess available.
    Error: Nothing to do

    i am geeting this error working in distro it is showing wat to do

  26. Hello;

    Please help me on below error in RHEL.

    [[email protected] /]# yum update
    Gathering header information file(s) from server(s)
    Server: Red Hat Linux 4AS – x86_64 – Base
    retrygrab() failed for:
    Executing failover method
    failover: out of servers to try
    Error getting file http://mirror.dulug.duke.edu/pub/yum-repository/redhat/4AS/x86_64/headers/header.info
    [Errno 4] IOError:

  27. please help for below Error:

    Server: Red Hat Linux 14 - i386 - Base retrygrab() failed for:   
     Executing failover method failover: out of servers to try
     Error getting file http://mirror.dulug.duke.edu/pub/yum-repository/redhat/14/i386/headers/header.info [Errno 4] IOError: 

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