Yum vs RPM: Difference and Comparison

A package manager is computer software that deals with packages, installs, updates, and upgrades necessary packages while archiving the rest. So what do Yum and RPM have to do with this?

Yum and RPM are both package managers for Linux systems. They are used based on the Linux distribution and your individual needs.

Key Takeaways

  1. YUM is a package management tool for Linux distributions based on RPM that automates software installation, updates, and dependency resolution.
  2. RPM is a package management system that installs, updates, and removes software packages in Linux distributions like Red Hat, CentOS, and Fedora.
  3. YUM and RPM manage software on Linux systems, but YUM simplifies the process by automatically handling dependencies and updates.

Yum vs. RPM

RPM is a command-line utility that installs, updates and manages software packages in Red Hat-based systems. It uses a package format with the extension .rpm and maintains a database of installed packages. YUM is a command-line utility used to manage packages in Red Hat-based systems.

Yum vs RPM

They are packaging managers for RPM-based Linux systems. They are high-level front-end management package managers for Linux distributions that are RPM-based.

RPM stands for Redhat Packaging Manager. It can be considered one of the oldest packaging managers that do basic functions like uninstalling, updating, and archiving the packages received by the Linux systems.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonYumRPM
DefinitionIt is a top-level and front end packet management that can do everything individually.It is a low-level packet manager that does the most basic things.
OriginIt was updated from YUP to Yum in 2003.The origin dates back to 1997.
DependencyIt resolves and installs dependencies automatically.Does not resolve dependencies.
Installing of packageYou can only install packages available in the repository, which shows already installed packages.It allows you to install multiple packages but must provide the exact file name.
UpgradingAutomatic upgrades are done to the latest version.Does not allow upgradation.
ManagementIt is a tool that can be used to manage RPM with ease.It isn’t easy to manage when it comes to installing/ upgrading packages.

What is Yum?

Yum, which stands for Yellowdog Upgrader Modified, is the modified or updated version of YUP or Yellowdog UPgrader and came in 2003. It is dependent on RPM.

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It mainly functions on RPM-based Linux systems and depends on RPM for its function. It is also used for managing, installing, and upgrading the packages in RPM-based Linux systems.

It can sense and resolve dependencies. Although it cannot install multiple packages like RPM, it can install the already available packages in the repository.

Yum can also scan and upgrade the packages to the latest versions. It also entirely relies on online repositories.

What is RPM?

RPM stands for Redhat Packaging Manager and was developed in 1997. It is a modified version of the package managers with the .pm extension in 1993.

It is a free, open-source package management system that works on Linux distribution systems and performs the basic functions of installing, uninstalling, scanning, upgrading, updating, etc.

RPM-based Linux systems need Yum for their management as it cannot sense and resolve dependencies independently. This would make it easier for the package manager to locate the file.

RPM does not depend on online repositories for its services and cannot scan or upgrade itself or its packages to the latest versions.

Main Difference between YUM and RPM

  1. Although Yum and RPM are Linux system packaging managers, they are still different, even in their meaning. While Yum is a top-level front-end packaging manager that operates on RPM-based Linux systems, RPM is a low-level packaging manager that performs basic functions.
  2. YUP, or Yellowdog UPgrader, was first made and completely developed between 1999-2000. The updated version of YUP is known as Yum, which was redeveloped or modified in 2003. At the same time, RPM or Redhat was developed in 1997.
  1. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-1-4302-6563-4_4
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Last Updated : 11 June, 2023

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23 thoughts on “Yum vs RPM: Difference and Comparison”

  1. Very informative explanation about what Yum and RPM are and what they do in a Linux system. It makes it easy to understand for those who are not familiar with package managers.

  2. I’m not sure if I’d completely agree with everything. I think RPM can be more user-friendly, even if it’s more low-level.

  3. While Yum and RPM serve similar purposes, the updated information about their history and differences is insightful.


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