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When doing an "Erratum Search" on the RHN site, and provide a specific package name, I get a result. The result is returned, and I have a single RHBA number, and I click on the link. The next page is a list of bugs and issues under "Description". What I would like to know is what package this affects? Are the packages under "Packages" the affected packages, or are the packages under "Packages" the "fixed" packages and need to be installed?


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up vote 3 down vote accepted

To expand my comment on Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams's answer into an answer in its own right:

The errata give the full names of the updated, correct packages.

The package names (as is the general convention for RPMs in the Red Hat / Fedora universe) follow the pattern:


Where name is the package name, version is the upstream package version, and release is the version of the package itself.

Whenever a package is changed (for an errata or even just for internal testing), the release is always increased. (This isn't enforced by rpm itself, but is enforced by policy at Red Hat, Fedora, and any respectable rpm-using distribution.)

So, if you have the name-version-release covered by the latest errata notice on your system already, you know that the system is up to date. (Although in some cases you may need to restart services or the whole system to make sure the fix is in effect -- that's a place where reading the notices is helpful.)

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That's the answer I was looking for! Appreciate it. – drewrockshard Feb 8 '11 at 22:49

They are the fixed packages that need to be "freshened", i.e. if you have older versions then you need to install them.

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can you explain further by "freshened"? Is it almost like, if you already have the package, but "newer, updated" packages are in the errata, so you have to re-apply the package to get the newer stuff? – drewrockshard Feb 8 '11 at 0:08
@drewrockshard: uh, what? If you already have an older version of the same package, this is what you need. If you have that version already, you know you're covered (unless there's a newer update). If you don't have that package at all, you don't need to be worried. – mattdm Feb 8 '11 at 0:13
@mattdm: This is what I'm asking, but you didn't actually answer my question. "If you already have an older version of the same package, this is what you need." - What do you mean? I'm trying to understand the "Errata" for RHEL. Does this actually means that I could have a package, for example openssh-4.3p2-41.el5.x86_64.rpm and have an updated package named the same thing? I need to know how Errata works and what it means to "update". I'm used to yum doing the work and I feel like this Errata thing is a bit different. – drewrockshard Feb 8 '11 at 0:19
Okay, I see what you are asking. The packages are named like this: name-version-packagerelease. The package release will always (by policy) increment when the contents change. – mattdm Feb 8 '11 at 3:29

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