Seem to have an error when updating the kernel on a OpenVZ server

when running "yum update" im getting the below

Loaded plugins: fastestmirror
Loading mirror speeds from cached hostfile
 * base: mirror.steadfast.net
 * extras: mirror.steadfast.net
 * openvz-kernel-rhel6: download.openvz.org
 * openvz-utils: download.openvz.org
 * soluslabs: mirror.us1.soluslabs.net
 * updates: mirror.steadfast.net
Setting up Update Process
Resolving Dependencies
--> Running transaction check
---> Package kernel.x86_64 0:2.6.32-431.20.3.el6 will be installed
--> Processing Dependency: kernel-firmware >= 2.6.32-431.20.3.el6 for package: kernel-  2.6.32-431.20.3.el6.x86_64
Package kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431.20.3.el6.noarch is obsoleted by vzkernel-firmware- 2.6.32-042stab090.2.noarch which is already installed
---> Package kernel-headers.x86_64 0:2.6.32-431.17.1.el6 will be updated
---> Package kernel-headers.x86_64 0:2.6.32-431.20.3.el6 will be an update
---> Package libxml2.x86_64 0:2.7.6-14.el6_5.1 will be updated
---> Package libxml2.x86_64 0:2.7.6-14.el6_5.2 will be an update
---> Package tzdata.noarch 0:2014d-1.el6 will be updated
---> Package tzdata.noarch 0:2014e-1.el6 will be an update
---> Package vzkernel.x86_64 0:2.6.32-042stab090.4 will be installed
---> Package vzkernel-firmware.noarch 0:2.6.32-042stab090.2 will be updated
---> Package vzkernel-firmware.noarch 0:2.6.32-042stab090.4 will be an update
--> Finished Dependency Resolution
Error: Package: kernel-2.6.32-431.20.3.el6.x86_64 (updates)
       Requires: kernel-firmware >= 2.6.32-431.20.3.el6
       Removing: vzkernel-firmware-2.6.32-042stab090.2.noarch (@openvz-kernel-rhel6)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.17.1.el6
       Updated By: vzkernel-firmware-2.6.32-042stab090.4.noarch (openvz-kernel-rhel6)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.17.1.el6
       Available: kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431.el6.noarch (base)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.el6
       Available: kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431. (updates)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.
       Available: kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431.3.1.el6.noarch (updates)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.3.1.el6
       Available: kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6.noarch (updates)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.5.1.el6
       Available: kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431.11.2.el6.noarch (updates)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.11.2.el6
       Available: kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431.17.1.el6.noarch (updates)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.17.1.el6
       Available: kernel-firmware-2.6.32-431.20.3.el6.noarch (updates)
           kernel-firmware = 2.6.32-431.20.3.el6
You could try using --skip-broken to work around the problem
You could try running: rpm -Va --nofiles --nodigest

Contents of grub.conf


title OpenVZ (2.6.32-042stab090.2)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-042stab090.2 root=/dev/sda2  ro crashkernel=auto SYSFONT=latarcyrheb-sun16 LANG=en_US.UTF-8 KEYTABLE=us
root (hd0,1)
initrd /boot/initramfs-2.6.32-042stab090.2.img
title OpenVZ (2.6.32-042stab088.4)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-042stab088.4 root=/dev/sda2  ro crashkernel=auto       SYSFONT=latarcyrheb-sun16 LANG=en_US.UTF-8 KEYTABLE=us
root (hd0,1)
initrd /boot/initramfs-2.6.32-042stab088.4.img
title linux centos6_64
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-431.17.1.el6.x86_64 root=/dev/sda2  ro
root (hd0,1)
initrd /boot/initrd-2.6.32-431.17.1.el6.x86_64.img


  • vzkernel-firmware seems to be conflicting with kernel-firmware. Did you try to remove the default kernel package and leave only vzkernel?
    – grekasius
    Jun 22, 2014 at 10:07
  • Not tried removing anything yet. What would you suggest I should do / command.
    – toza
    Jun 22, 2014 at 10:21
  • To remove the default kernel package run command: yum remove kernel. Check the output of this command to make it's not going to remove any packages which you need.
    – grekasius
    Jun 22, 2014 at 10:28
  • When running that command to remove- I get Loaded plugins: fastestmirror Setting up Remove Process Resolving Dependencies --> Running transaction check ---> Package kernel.x86_64 0:2.6.32-431.17.1.el6 will be erased --> Finished Dependency Resolution
    – toza
    Jun 22, 2014 at 10:31
  • It doesn't list kernel-firmware as a dependency, so try to specify that separately: yum remove kernel kernel-firmware.
    – grekasius
    Jun 22, 2014 at 11:02

3 Answers 3


In your system vzkernel-firmware is conflicting with kernel-firmware. Because vzkernel packages are coming from outside the standard package repositories such conflict is not unusual.

The easiest way to solve this issue assuming that you don't use original CentOS kernel is to remove it. To do that run:

yum remove kernel kernel-firmware

Before proceeding check that it's not going to remove any packages which you need.


The accepted answer is incorrect, based on the official answer:


Correct Answer:

You need to remove the vzkernel-firmware by running the following:

rpm -e vzkernel-firmware

And then adding the following to /etc/yum.repos.d/openvz.repo :

  • Theoretically it's safer to use both packages from the same repository. In cases when one or another repository updates their packages there is a possibility that versions will get out of sync.
    – grekasius
    Jun 23, 2014 at 10:07
  • Not on the RHEL 6 version. vzkernel-firmware is just given as a supplement for older versions.
    – Sina
    Jun 23, 2014 at 13:38

We expected this problem many times when upgrading OpenVZ. IMHO best solution for this issue is: yum remove kernel. It's pretty safe and solve this issue forever. I have no ideas why you need standard kernel on OpenVZ nodes.

But please be careful and check many times about "What packages should remove yum" when removing kernel package.

  • Strange how the standard kernel was still installed, running 'yum remove kernel' has resolved the issue - Thanks
    – toza
    Jun 22, 2014 at 11:18

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