Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between YUM and RPM

computerYUM vs RPM

The Red Hat Package Manager or RPM is the default package manager for Linux distributions that use packages with the same name. Initially developed by Red Hat, it eventually found widespread acceptance in a lot of Linux distributions. YUM stands for Yellowdog Updater Modified and is a front end for Linux distributions that utilize the RPM package format. Both of these are only usable with RPM based distros and are not usable with those that use debian packages like Ubuntu.

Although RPM is a very robust tool that a lot of users are already familiar with, there are still some minor flaws that are an annoyance to users. The most prominent problem is a state commonly referred to by most people as ‘dependency hell’. This problem occurs with packages that depend on a lot of other packages, some of those packages also depend on a lot of other packages. It is common knowledge that you must install all dependencies for the program to work correctly. RPM is unable to automatically do this for you. It can only check whether all the required packages are installed prior to installing the needed package. Manually tracking and installing each dependency is a major chore for most people who only want to install a single package initially.

YUM is capable of tracking the dependencies of a package and installing them prior to installing the package that the user wanted to install. This simplifies the whole process as you need only know the name of the package that you want to install and not worry whether the required packages have been installed or not. Packages that can’t be found on the system are searched for in the repositories that are available to the system.

Although both RPM and YUM are what really installs the packages, you would probably not be using either of those unless you are proficient with command lines and the various parameters that need to be passed. To make it easier for ordinary people to quickly grasp total control of their system, there are various graphical user interfaces or GUIs that can be used on top of either YUM or RPM. These GUIs are what people commonly see and interact with and not YUM or RPM.


1. RPM is a package manager while YUM is a frontend that can be used with RPM.

2. The RPM package manager is unable to track dependencies while YUM can.

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  1. Thanks for this information…somehow it really clears up some of the confusion in my head when I try to get some clear concept of those two commands.

  2. good post….

  3. Thank for helping me these two commands. It a definite answer πŸ˜€

  4. Thank you! You cleared it well.
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  5. Perfectly explained, thank you

  6. very well explained thanks a lot.

  7. Good explanation. Thanks

  8. help full answer. Thanks

  9. excellent post, concise and to the point

  10. Tarun
    challenging command nice, thanks

  11. very clean explanation

  12. Got it

  13. very nice explanation. Helped me a lot. I was searching for this from past many days. Thank you so much.

  14. Great explanation. Thank you.

  15. Nice explanation. Thanks Ben πŸ™‚

  16. Thanks cleared different between rpm and yum

  17. Very good explanation, Thanks….. πŸ™‚

  18. Nicely explained

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