Wednesday, June 6. 2007
Erasing the distinction between these two group of packages opened up the way for any community member to maintain any type of package. It also meant that the package set became too large to fit on a single-sided DVD. Rather than arbitrarily select a group of packages to go on disc, a set of tools was created which can take any set of packages -- including ones from third-party repositories -- and build a custom installation image or a live environment which can be booted and run entirely from optical or USB media.
Monday, June 4. 2007
Fedora 7 offers more distribution and installation options than any previous version of Fedora.
The Fedora torrents and mirrors offer seven different Fedora DVD and CD images:
The Live discs may be used to directly run Fedora without installing it, but they may also be used to perform a minimal installation to hard disk. This minimal installation will not include most server software or large desktop applications such as OpenOffice.org.
The actual Fedora 7 installation process is very similar to the Fedora 6 installation process. If you haven't performed a Fedora installation before, get the free Chapter 1 from my book Fedora Linux: A Complete Guide to Red Hat's Community Distribution on the O'Reilly web site (click the Sample Chapter link).
Many people would like to install Fedora 7 on a system without a working DVD drive. This is easily done using a network installation if you have another Linux system available on the network, as I wrote on the fedora-list yesterday:
Friday, April 20. 2007
Let's wrap up this Focus Week with a some tips and tricks in a Q&A format:
Q: I have an RPM file that did not come from a yum repository. I can install it with rpm -i packagefile, but then I have to solve the dependencies myself. Is there a way to install a package which is not from a repository, but use the yum repository system to resolve dependencies?
# yum localinstall packagefile.rpm
Q: Fedora provides an icon in the notification area/taskbar that shows when packages are available for upgrade. But I run a server, and there's usually no one logged into the GUI. How can I get my system to automatically install the latest updates, so that it is not left vulnerable to known security risks?
Q: Yum seems dazed and confused, and I think it's due to some bad repository data being cached. How do I fix this?
A: Tell yum to erase cached data:
Thursday, April 19. 2007
Yum resolves dependencies and downloads packages from repositories -- online package libraries. Fedora Core 6 ships with three repositories enabled:
Repository configuration files are stored in in /etc/yum.repos.d. By editing these files, it is possible to change the server(s) used for each repository, use a repository on DVD or hard disk, and enable or disable repositories.
Wednesday, April 18. 2007
The Yum repository system is layered on top of RPM to facilitate automatic package downloading and dependency resolution. There are seven ways to access Yum repositories in Fedora 6:
Tuesday, April 17. 2007
The venerable rpm utility provides command-line access to the RPM system. With the development of the Fedora repository system, rpm is rarely used for package installation, update, or removal -- yum serves that role -- but rpm is still the best tool for directly querying the local database of installed software.
The rpm query option (-q) provides access to the RPM database. It is used along with options that fall into two distinct categories: those which select the packages for which information is displayed, and those which select the information to be displayed about each of those packages. Here are the most common options:
Options to select files:
Options to control the information displayed:
These arguments can be combined in many different ways. Here are some examples:
Monday, April 16. 2007
The Fedora linux distribution is comprised of thousands of RPM packages. RPM stands for RPM Package Manager and refers to the package format, the tool used to manage packages, and the overall package system. RPM is important not only to Fedora but to the entire Linux community, because it is the package format specified in ISO 23360, the Linux Standard Base.
An RPM package is a single file containing all of the components necessary to install one feature, such as a software application, a group of related utilities, a driver, or a set or fonts or artwork files. The components contained in an RPM package may include:
The RPM system tracks installed packages in a local database, which is invaluable to a system administrator -- the database makes it easy to find out what is installed, identify the source of mystery files, determine if files have changed, and check which license applies to a package.
When installing a package, the RPM system can determine when other packages are needed to meet dependencies, but RPM itself cannot determine which packages will solve those dependencies. The yum repository system builds on RPM, permitting dependencies to be solved automatically by searching repositories of packages.
In the next few days we'll examine the Fedora package tools in detail:
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