Maintaining SuSE with YaST

SuSE developed YaST and its GUI cousin, YaST2, for its distribution. These tools, both of which I refer to as YaST for convenience, are all-in-one system configuration tools. You can adjust startup scripts, set network options, and so on all from one user interface. One of the many options available from the YaST Control Center is an Online Update tool. This option is available from the Software configuration area on the main YaST page. Select it to update your packages to the latest versions available. YaST displays an Online Update window in which you select whether to perform an automatic or manual update, and in which you specify an update source. I recommend performing a manual update because this process enables you to opt out of upgrades that are unimportant or that might cause problems. If you select the manual update option, YaST displays a list of available updates, as shown in Figure 11.4. When you click Accept, YaST downloads information on the updates. You must then restart the Online Update tool to select and install the individual updates.

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Figure 11.4: Like Red Hat's Update Agent, SuSE's Update Agent enables you to select packages to update.

YaST's update options are very similar to those of Red Hat's Update Agent, considered broadly. Both tools present friendly GUIs that are best suited for use on desktop workstations, although they can be used on servers. SuSE doesn't offer an equivalent to Red Hat's Network Alert Notification Tool, though, so you should be careful to run YaST's Online Update from time to time.

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