Working with Software Packages

All the packages that SUSE supplies are offered in RPM format.

| f - - p RPM (officially, but not very helpfully) now stands for the RPM Package Manager. Its original name was the Red Hat Package Manager, and it was developed originally by Red Hat, but it has been widely adopted by other distributions. SUSE adopted RPM at an early stage. Not all Linux distributions use RPM; the best-known alternative is the one used by the Debian distribution and its derivatives.

An RPM package is a packed archive containing the files that need to be installed on the system as well as necessary information about the package, particularly about dependencies (which other packages the package depends on).

If you are installing SUSE packages, then the best way to do this is to use YaST. YaST will sort out the dependencies for you during the package installation and generally "do the right thing.'' You can start YaST and use the package installation screen to see what packages are available and choose the ones you want to install. Alternatively, if you know the name of the package that you want to install, and the installation source is available to the system, you can simply type the following:

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