Chapter 18. Gnome-RPM

Gnome-RPM provides a GUI interface for the Red Hat Package Manager (RPM). To learn more about RPM technology, turn to Chapter 17.

If you do not want to use the command-line version of RPM, you can use Gnome-RPM, a graphical tool which runs under the X Window System. Gnome-RPM was written by James Henstridge (). RPM 3.0 support was written by Red Hat, and additional rpmfind code was written by Daniel Veillard.

Gnome-RPM (which is also referred to as gnorpm) allows users to easily work with RPM technology and features a friendly interface.

Gnome-RPM is "GNOME-compliant," meaning that it seamlessly integrates into GNOME, a graphical X Window System desktop environment provided with Red Hat Linux.

Using Gnome-RPM, you can easily accomplish the following tasks:

The Gnome-RPM interface provides a menu, a toolbar, a tree, and a window which displays currently installed packages.

To perform a Gnome-RPM task, you usually find and select packages, then choose the type of operation to perform using either a button on the toolbar, from the menu or by right-clicking with the mouse.

You can also use the Web find option to search the Internet for newly released packages. You can direct Gnome-RPM to search for particular distributions when you want to look for new packages. (If you have a slow connection, this option can take some time to fully execute.) See the section called Configuration for more information about this feature.


Be careful when using Web find, since there is no way to verify the integrity of the many packages which are available at numerous repositories. Before installing packages, you should perform a query on that package to help you determine whether it can be trusted. Packages not produced by Red Hat are not supported in any way by Red Hat. Refer to the section called Verifying Packages to learn more about verifying packages.

Using Gnome-RPM to perform all of these and many other operations is the same as using RPM commands from the shell prompt. However, the graphical nature of Gnome-RPM may make these operations easier to perform. Gnome-RPM can display packages in a variety of different ways. Refer to the section called Installing New Packages for more information on using filters to identify packages.

You can install, upgrade, or uninstall several packages with a few button clicks. Similarly, you can query and verify more than one package at a time. Since Gnome-RPM is integrated with GNOME, you can also perform installation, query and verification on packages from within the GNOME File Manager.

Starting Gnome-RPM

To start Gnome-RPM, use one of the following methods:

You will see the main Gnome-RPM window (as shown in Figure 18-1).


If you would like to install, upgrade or uninstall packages, you must be root. The easiest way to become root is to type the su command and [Enter] at a shell prompt. Then type the root password. However, you do not have to be root to query and verify packages.

The Gnome-RPM interface consists of the following:

Figure 18-1. Main Gnome-RPM Window