A Yum plugin I would like: using a local DVD as a repo source

January 11, 2012

It's become obvious to me that, to put it one way, Fedora 16 is where all of the update action is and Fedora 15 is not getting many changed packages (this is probably well known among people who actually pay attention to how Fedora is structured). This means that I really need to upgrade my home machine from Fedora 15 to Fedora 16. Because I'm sane I'll be doing this with a yum upgrade, which means that I need to get several gigabytes of all of those RPMs.

On my work machine, this is no particular problem because I have fast networking; I'm not going to notice fetching even gigabytes of data (and it goes basically as fast as the other end can feed it to me). At home, well, not entirely so much; I have a much better DSL downlink than I used to, but it is not really all that fast and I will definitely notice if it's in use.

What I would like to be able to do is use a local DVD as the source of as many of those packages as possible. The obvious DVD to use is the normal Fedora install DVD (hopefully most of the packages I need will be coming from the base Fedora 16 repository anyways instead of from the Fedora 16 updates). A plugin to do this would be useful for more than yum upgrades; among other things, you could also use it to easily add more packages after the upgrade (or after a from-scratch install from the DVD).

(This plugin would even be useful at work. Even though I do yum upgrades at work I often download the Fedora DVD image so that I can test in VMWare and do other things with it. It seems silly to download the same packages twice, once in a DVD image and once for a yum upgrade.)

While I think you can do this with a carefully created repos.d file, the plugin I'd really like would automatically notice things that look like mounted DVDs, check them for an install-DVD-like structure, figure out what Fedora version they're for, and create a repo on the fly as appropriate. This is probably a pipedream.

Using 'yum --downloadonly' overnight sidesteps a lot of the bandwidth issues for my specific case but it still feels like a wasted opportunity.

(I'd also like to be able to use a local DVD as a package source for mock's build environments. Repeatedly downloading base package sets every so often is not a really good use of my DSL link.)

PS: it's possible that what I want already exists and I just haven't found it. I think mock has some support for this, which I haven't investigated extensively as I don't often need to use mock at home.

Written on 11 January 2012.
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Last modified: Wed Jan 11 22:43:12 2012
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