How to Find a Yum Package

Yum (Yellowdog Updater Modified) is a utility for finding, installing, updating and removing software on Linux. It runs on rpm-compatible Linux distributions, e.g. RedHat, Fedora, SUSE, CentOS, Mandriva.

Get the Yum Package Name by Just Using the Software’s Name

When you want to install some software, sometimes you’re lucky and can use the software’s name. For example, installing the GNU screen terminal utility is as simple as:

sudo yum install screen

Guessing the package name doesn’t always work. For example, try installing vim (an improved vi text editor with syntax highlighting) with just the package name vim:

[root@sayonara ~]# yum install vim
Loaded plugins: fastestmirror
Loading mirror speeds from cached hostfile
 * rpmforge:
 * base:
 * updates:
 * addons:
 * extras:
Setting up Install Process
Parsing package install arguments
No package vim available.
Nothing to do

In this case yum reports: No package vim available.

Similarly, trying to install the MySQL database with just mysql as the package name, will probably result in the same error No package mysql available:

sudo yum install mysql

Are vim and MySQL really not available for installation with yum?

Find a Yum Package Using Yum Search

The following yum command searches for different pacakages mentioning vim:

[root@sayonara ~]# yum search vim
Loaded plugins: fastestmirror, priorities
Loading mirror speeds from cached hostfile
* rpmforge:
================================================================================= Matched: vim =================================================================================
vim-X11.i386 : The VIM version of the vi editor for the X Window System.
vim-common.i386 : The common files needed by any version of the VIM editor.
vim-enhanced.i386 : A version of the VIM editor which includes recent enhancements.
vim-minimal.i386 : A minimal version of the VIM editor.

Then just pick the package you want to install, for example:

sudo yum install vim-minimal.i386

Another example is looking for the package to install MySQL:

[root@sayonara ~]# yum search mysql
Loaded plugins: fastestmirror
Loading mirror speeds from cached hostfile
 * rpmforge:
 * base:
 * updates:
 * addons:
 * extras:
=================================================================== Matched: mysql ====================================================================
mod_auth_mysql.i386 : Basic authentication for the Apache web server using a MySQL database.
qt-MySQL.i386 : MySQL drivers for Qt's SQL classes.
MySQL-python.i386 : An interface to MySQL
aimsniff.i386 : Monitor and archive AOL Instant Messenger messages
apr-util-mysql.i386 : APR utility library MySQL DBD driver
bytefx-data-mysql.i386 : Database connectivity for Mono
cacti.noarch : Complete network graphing solution designed on top of RRDTool
cacti-docs.noarch : Documentation for the cacti network graphing solution
freeradius-mysql.i386 : MySQL bindings for freeradius
freeradius2-mysql.i386 : MySQL support for freeradius
gtksql.i386 : Graphical database query tool for MySQL and PostgreSQL
krecipes.i386 : Recipe manager
libdbi-dbd-mysql.i386 : MySQL plugin for libdbi
lighttpd-mod_mysql_vhost.i386 : Virtual host module for lighttpd that uses a MySQL database
motion.i386 : Video-surveilance system
mtop.noarch : Tool to monitor a MySQL database
mysql.i386 : MySQL client programs and shared libraries.
mysql-bench.i386 : MySQL benchmark scripts and data
mysql-connector-odbc.i386 : ODBC driver for MySQL
mysql-devel.i386 : Files for development of MySQL applications
mysql-server.i386 : The MySQL server and related files.
mysql-test.i386 : The test suite distributed with MySQL
mytop.noarch : Top clone for MySQL
nagios-plugins.i386 : Host/service/network monitoring program plugins for Nagios
ndoutils.i386 : Nagios plugin to store Nagios data in a relational database
pdns-backend-mysql.i386 : MySQL backend for pdns
perl-Acme-BeyondPerl-ToSQL.noarch : Perl module to have RDBMS calculate instead of Perl
perl-Class-DBI-mysql.noarch : Perl module that extends Class::DBI for MySQL
perl-DBD-MySQL.i386 : A MySQL interface for perl
perl-DBD-SQLite.i386 : Small fast embedded SQL database engine
perl-DBD-mysql.i386 : Perl module that implements a MySQL driver for DBI
perl-DBIx-TableHash.noarch : Tie a hash to a mysql table + SQL utils
perl-DBIx-TextIndex.i386 : full-text searching in SQL databases
perl-DNS-BL.noarch : Manage DNS black lists
perl-DateTime-Format-MySQL.noarch : Perl module to parse and format MySQL dates and times
perl-MySQL-Config.noarch : Perl module to parse and utilize MySQL's /etc/my.cnf and ~/.my.cnf files
perl-Qmail-Mysql.noarch : Perl module for mysql database used by qmail-mysql
perl-Time-Piece-MySQL.noarch : Perl module adds MySQL-specific methods to Time::Piece
php-adodb.noarch : Portable Database Library for PHP
php-mysql.i386 : A module for PHP applications that use MySQL databases.
php-pdo.i386 : A database access abstraction module for PHP applications
php-pear-MDB2-Driver-mysql.noarch : MySQL MDB2 driver
php-pecl-session_mysql.i386 : PECL package to save sessions to a MySQL database
phpmyadmin.noarch : Web application to manage MySQL
proftpd-mysql.i386 : Module to add MySQL support to the ProFTPD FTP server
pure-ftpd.i386 : Lightweight, fast and secure FTP server
python-sqlalchemy.noarch : SQL toolkit and object relational mapper for Python
qt4-mysql.i386 : MySQL drivers for Qt's SQL classes
rsyslog.i386 : Enhanced system logging and kernel message trapping daemons
rsyslog-mysql.i386 : MySQL support for rsyslog
sphinx.i386 : Free open-source SQL full-text search engine
synbak.noarch : Universal backup system
sysbench.i386 : System performance benchmark
unixODBC.i386 : A complete ODBC driver manager for Linux.

Looking over the available packages, the package for installing the MySQL database would be mysql-server.i386.

More information is available at the yum homepage.

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