How to Install VLC Player in Red Hat Linux

by David Wayne

Since Red Hat Linux has split into several derivative distributions, including Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Fedora and CentOS, you can use the same package repositories for each operating system. The default Red Hat Package Manager repositories don't include VLC, but the community-supported repository RepoForge, formerly RPMForge, does. All Red Hat derivatives use the Yum package manager, so adding RepoForge to your system involves the same steps for any RPM-based system. After adding RepoForge to Yum, you can install VLC using standard Yum commands.

Gather Information About Your Computer

You can find your computer's architecture by opening a terminal window and entering the command “uname -m” (without quotes, here and throughout). The architecture is probably either x86 or x86_64, but if you have a PowerPC, you can't install VLC because this older, non-standard hardware isn't supported. Visit the RepoForge website to download the latest release for your architecture (link in Resources). Use the cd command to change the current directory to that containing the RepoForge download, as in the following example: cd /home/username/Downloads Substitute the path to your download directory for “/home/username/Downloads” in the example.

Enable RepoForge Key Signing

Installing RepoForge packages with Yum requires public key cryptography, and you must add the repository maintainer's public key to Yum before verifying and installing RepoForge. The maintainer, Dag Wieers, hosts the key on his website, and you can import it to Yum by entering the following command: sudo rpm --import If the import fails, Yum already has the public key and you don't need to import it again.

Verify RepoForge

It's a good idea to verify packages downloaded from the Internet instead of through Yum because external software hasn't been tested by RHEL and Fedora engineers. Yum provides a command-line flag for verifying packages, and you can verify your RepoForge download using the following command: sudo rpm -K rpmforge-release-0.5.3-1.el6.rf.*.rpm Ensure that you type an uppercase “K” as well as the correct name of the package you downloaded. The asterisk in the filename replaces your computer's architecture with a wildcard value, but you can simply type “rpm” and press “Tab” to automatically complete the filename.

Install RepoForge

After verifying RepoForge, install it using the following command: sudo rpm -i rpmforge-release-0.5.3-1.el6.rf.*.rpm Yum can now install RepoForge packages using normal package management commands.

Install VLC and Its Dependencies

When you install software through a package manager instead of an external download, the package manager automatically resolves the required libraries and packages. Now that Yum recognizes RepoForge packages, you can enter the following command to install VLC and its dependencies: sudo yum install vlc Yum prompts you to confirm the download and lists the packages required by VLC. The download may be around 40MB to 60MB, depending on the packages already installed on your computer. Press “Enter” to confirm the download and install VLC.

About the Author

David Wayne has been writing since 2010, with technology columns appearing in several regional newspapers in Texas. Wayne graduated from the University of Houston in 2005, earning a Bachelor of Arts in communications.

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