[Yum] installing older kernels (or other packages) through yum

Fernando Lopez-Lezcano nando at ccrma.Stanford.EDU
Tue Jul 18 05:13:00 UTC 2006

Hi all, I've been packaging realtime preemption kernels for the Planet
CCRMA repository for a while and I've run into a problem when trying to
migrate to using yum on Fedora Core >= 5 (I have been using apt for rpm
for Planet CCRMA since the beginning of 2002).

The core components of a Planet CCRMA install are a patched kernel, up
to date alsa drivers and userland utilities and various other small
programs. All those are installed by installing a meta package that
contains only dependencies for the required components. Ideally the user
would do:

  yum install planetccrma-core

and be done with it...

The problem is that Planet CCRMA's kernel must/should coexist with the
normal Fedora kernels, and it is not (generally) higher in
version-release than the latest Fedora kernel - in this case higher is
not necessarily better. So yum determines all the dependencies correctly
and at the last moment decides it is not going to install an "older"
kernel and bails out. 

In the apt world I would get around this problem by specifying a
"--oldpackage" option in one of the configuration files (which would be
passed on to rpm). With that the meta package would install all its
requirements with no complains. 

I have not been able to find anything equivalent in yum. 

After looking at the source for Fedora Core's yum (2.6.1) I created a
small patch (attached to this email) for adding this feature. It adds an
"oldpackage" configuration option (mirroring the name of the rpm command
line option) to /etc/yum.conf. When set to "1" it will allow for the
installation of older packages to satisfy explicit dependencies. 

Would it be possible to include this in future versions?
Or is there a better way to accomplish the same thing?
-- Fernando

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