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Updating SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9

Updated 19 Jul 2006

Updates for SLES are downloaded and installed via YaST Online Update (YOU).  These updates may be installed both during and after installation. The process is the same regardless of when the updates are installed. This document gives an overview of YOU, the update process in the context of installation, and accessing YOU after installation.


When YOU is launched, it begins by downloading a list of possible servers from which updates may be obtained. This list may vary based on the current update status of the SLES system and the available updates. For example, a common use for the dynamic server list is to install updates to YOU itself prior to allowing any other updates to be installed. This is accomplished by allowing YOU to only connect to a special YOU update server until all available updates have been installed. Once this has been accomplished, other update servers become available in the server list and regular updates can be installed.

Four official update servers can be made available in the server list. Table 1: The YOU Servers lists these servers and describes their functions.

Table 1: The YOU Servers
Server Address Use Server that must be selected when YOU updates are available. No other servers can be used until all updates from this server are installed. This server does not require authentication.
Ireland: SUSE Portal Accounts Only Server which is used if the SLES license was activated via the SUSE Portal and the SLES box is located in the Americas. This server requires authentication.
Germany: SUSE Portal Accounts Only Server which is used if the SLES license was activated via the SUSE Portal and the SLES box is located in Europe. This server requires authentication.
Novell Accounts Only Server which is used if the SLES license was activated via the Novell Portal. All new customers use this server. This server requires authentication.

The regular update servers require authentication from a SUSE Portal or Novell Portal account that has the proper registration code associated with it. New customers should authenticate through a Novell Portal account. To learn how to obtain a valid registration code and apply it to a Novell Portal account, please see Registering SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server.

Actual installation experience may vary from what is shown based on the updates currently available and whether the system is being installed using the original installation CDs or the Service Pack CDs— the Service Pack CDs contain updates which may or may not require the YOU update.

Updating SLES During Installation

To install SLES updates during installation, do the following.

  1. After completing the initial setup and package installation, the YaST installation system goes through a series of modules to configure various aspects of the system. One of these modules, known as YaST Online Update (YOU), runs immediately after configuring the network. When the network test is completed the dialog shown in Figure 1: Online Updates Available is displayed.

    • To install the updates, select Yes, Run Online Update Now; then click OK. The YOU module downloads a list of available servers.

    • To skip the update process, select No, Skip Update and click OK.

      Figure 1: Online Updates Available

  2. The next screen lists the available update servers. Depending on the currently available updates and the installation media used, the Installation Source list may contain the regular update servers or the special YOU update (youfix) server. Either leave the youfix server selected or select the applicable server (see Table 1: The YOU Servers). In this example a YOU update is available (see Figure 2: YaST Online Update – YOU Fix). To see an example of using a regular update server, go to step 5. To install the YOU update, select Next.

    Figure 2: YaST Online Update – YOU Fix

  3. The YOU update server does not require authentication. YOU connects to the server and downloads a list of available updates. A YOU update typically has only one patch (see Figure 3: Available YOU Updates). Click Accept to install the update. (Some updates provide additional information or instructions, or prompt for a final confirmation before installing.)

    Figure 3: Available YOU Updates

  4. The update is downloaded and installed. When the installation is completed, click Finish. If the original download is no longer required, it can be removed by selecting Remove Source Packages after Update (see Figure 4: Patch Download and Installation).

    Figure 4: Patch Download and Installation

  5. Continue through the rest of the YaST modules to configure the system. On the Installation Completed screen, click Finish. If a YOU update was already installed, YOU should automatically launch again. If YOU does not launch, simply follow the instructions given in Updating After Installation to launch YOU again. Because the YOU update has been installed, three servers are now available for updates (see Figure 5: YaST Online Update - Regular Servers).

    Figure 5: YaST Online Update – Regular Servers

  6. After selecting the appropriate server (based on the information given in Table 1: The YOU Servers) click Next. An Authorization dialog appears (see Figure 6: Authorization). If the SLES license was activated via the SUSE Portal, enter the SUSE Portal credentials. If it was activated via a Novell Account, use the Novell Account credentials. To save this information for future updates, select Keep Authentication Data. Click Login after entering the appropriate information.

    Note: Login credentials cannot be substituted. Use the SUSE credentials for the SUSE servers, or the Novell Account credentials for the Novell server.

    Figure 6: Authorization

  7. YOU downloads a list of available updates. All Security and Recommended updates for installed packages are already checked (see Figure 7: YOU Patches). Click Accept to install these updates.

    Figure 7: YOU Patches

  8. The selected updates are downloaded and installed. Some updates may require additional confirmation before they are installed, or they may provide additional information. When the installation is complete, click Finish.

Updating SLES After Installation

To update SLES after installation, using YOU, do the following:

  1. SLES uses an applet called SuSE Watcher to monitor for new updates and make YOU more accessible. To activate SuSE Watcher, click the icon in the lower right corner that looks like a sheet of paper with a circled i on it (see Figure 1: SUSE Watcher). A dialog appears, asking if the SuSE Watcher service should be activated. Click Yes to activate it.

    Figure 1: SUSE Watcher

  2. The icon turns green and a new dialog appears (see Figure 2: SuSE Watcher). Select Start Online Update. A prompt may request the root password.

    Note: The YaST Online Update module can also be accessed directly through YaST. Start YaST by clicking the YaST icon on the Desktop (enter the root password if prompted). Then select Software | Online Update. To launch a console-based version open a terminal and, as root, enter 'you'.

    Figure 2: SuSE Watcher

  3. When the YOU window appears select the appropriate update server. (If a YOU update is available, the regular update servers will not appear in the list. Simply install the YOU updates to gain access to the regular update servers again.)

Migrating from the SUSE Portal to a Novell Account

The functionality of the SUSE Portal has been migrated to Novell accounts. As users migrate their licenses to their Novell accounts, they need to modify YaST Online Update (YOU) to retrieve updates from a Novell update server instead of the SUSE servers. This involves two steps:

  1. Ensuring that YaST Online Update is up to date.

  2. Changing the update server to

Migrating SLES 9

  1. The first step is to ensure that YOU has all of its updates installed. When YOU is launched, it automatically downloads a list of available update servers. If a 'youfix' is available, the update server is automatically selected as (see Figure 1: YOU Fix). Select Next to download a list of updates. If the 'youfix' server is not selected, skip to step 3.

    Figure 1: YOU Fix
  2. A list of the updates available for YOU are listed. Among them there may be a 'https enablement' update (see Figure 2: YOU Updates). This is the critical update needed to use the Novell update server. Do not be concerned if this update is not the one available on the list; it may have already been installed during a prior update. Install any updates and exit YOU.

    Figure 2: YOU Updates
  3. After all YOU updates are installed, launching YOU brings up a list of available update servers under Installation Source. There should be three available: two for SUSE Portal accounts and one for Novell accounts. To use the Novell update server, simply select "Novell Accounts Only." This points YOU to the server: (see Figure 3: Server List). Authenticate with the Novell account credentials and install updates like normal.

    Figure 3: Server List

Migrating SLES 8/SLOX

  1. Before SLES 8/SLOX can use the Novell server, the https enablement patch for YOU must be installed (Patch-10448, Recommended update for yast2-online-update). There are two major ways to install the patch:

    • Using YOU and a SUSE Portal Account -- This is this easiest method if an existing SUSE Portal Account is available.

    • Using the PSDB and a Novell Account -- This is this easiest method if a Novell Account is available only.

    Using YOU and a SUSE Portal Account

    There is an update available on YOU which includes the https enablement patch. To install it, simply launch YOU like normal and connect to one of the SUSE Portal servers (sdb or sdb2). Find the update called 'Recommended update for yast2-online-update' (Patch-10448). Make sure the update is checked and select next to install it (see Figure 4: HTTPS Update). When the update is installed, proceed to step 2.

    Figure 4: HTTPS Update

    Using the PSDB and a Novell Account

    If there is only a Novell Account available, the https enablement patch must be downloaded and installed manually prior to being able to connect to any YOU server. To do so, simply go to the PSDB article, Recommended update for yast2-online-update, and download the file matching your architecture (Novell Account credentials will be required). Install the rpm by opening a command prompt and typing, as root (adjusting the filename for the correct architecture):

    # rpm -Uvh yast2-online-update-2.6.17-59.i586.rpm

    Once the RPM has been installed, YOU can connect to HTTPS servers. Proceed to step 2 for more information.

  2. Once YOU has the https enablement patch installed, simply point it to and use the Novell Account credentials to install updates.

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