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Get more software than that of the base repositories.

Use case

A software is needed, that is not in the base repository. One could download the needed rpm and install it with yum. But there may be dependencies that are not in the base repositories. It is better to just add the repository where the rpm comes from to yum.

Add software repositories

Centos comes with yum configured to look only in the base repositories. To use other repositories they must be installed to be findable by yum. Repository websites often offer a program to install their repository in yum. After installation of the repository, the configuration files can be found in the directory /etc/yum.repos.d.

WARNING: Be careful which repositories you add. They may contain harmful or unstable software that renders your server unusable.


Epel is a trustworthy repository that comes from the development line of Centos. Fedora is the cutting edge frontrunner of Red Hat. At regular intervals Red Hat makes a version of stable software from Fedora. Such version is called Enterprise Linux (EL). Centos is also a copy of EL. Often software is called EL6 or EL7. These versions correspond with Red Hat 6 or 7, and Centos 6 or 7. The EL in Epel also refers to Enterprise Linux.

EL versions are subsets of Fedora. "Missing" software can be found in the Epel repository. This repository is often the most you need, if at all.


As Epel is endorsed by Centos, the installation of the repository is in one of the base repositories.

yum install epel-release

That is it. Now software from the Epel repository can be installed.


If you like to disable the Epel repository, then edit the file
and set
From now on Epel is not automatically used by yum. It can be used occasionally by adding to the yum install statement:
--enablerepo epel