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2.2. About Repositories

A repository is a prepared directory or Web site that contains software packages and index files. Software management utilities such as yum automatically locate and obtain the correct RPM packages from these repositories. This method frees you from having to manually find and install new applications or updates. You may use a single command to update all system software, or search for new software by specifying criteria.
A network of servers provide several repositories for each version of Fedora Core. The package management utilities in Fedora Core are already configured to use three of these repositories:
The packages that make up a Fedora Core release, as it is on disc
Updated versions of packages that are provided in Base
Packages for a large selection of additional software

Fedora Development Repositories

Fedora Core also includes settings for several alternative repositories. These provide packages for various types of test system, and replace one or more of the standard repositories. Only enable support for one of the following repositories if you test or develop Fedora software: fedora-devel (Rawhide), fedora-extras-devel, and updates-testing.
Third-party software developers also provide repositories for their Fedora compatible packages. To learn how to configure your Fedora system to use third-party repositories, read Section 7, “Configuring Access to Software Repositories”.
You may also use the package groups provided by the Fedora repositories to manage related packages as sets. Some third-party repositories add packages to these groups, or provide their packages as additional groups.

Available Package Groups

To view a list of all of the available package groups for your Fedora system, run the command su -c 'yum grouplist'.
Use repositories to ensure that you always receive current versions of software. If several versions of the same package are available, your management utility automatically selects the latest version.

Installing Software not from a Repository

Install software using manual methods only when you are confident there is no repository which can currently provide it. You may have to manage that software with manual methods, instead of with Fedora software management utilities.
The yum commands shown in this document use repositories as package sources. Refer to Section 8, “Installing Software from an Isolated Package” for details of using yum to install software from a package file.