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This article gives an overview over the Fedora linux distribution

1. Fedora

Fedora is a community driven Linux distribution backed by RedHat.

The project has a reputation to adopt new technologies early and for working closely together with upstream communities.

The default desktop environment is gnome. There are other alternatives (called spins) available like KDE, XFCE or Cinnamon.

See the Fedora download page for a download link.

2. The package manager

Managing software packages on Fedora is done using the package manager dnf. It can install software, remove it, upgrade the Fedora version and much more.

2.1. Commands

Table 1. Table Available Commands





$ dnf install <package_name>

Installs a package on the system


$ dnf remove <package_name>

Removes an installed package from the system


$ dnf autoremove

Removes all packages that were not installed by the user but are not needed anymore


$ dnf search <term1> <term2>

Searches for packages whose description or name match one or more of the given terms


$ dnf info <package_name>

Displays information about a package


$ dnf check-update

Checks for available updates for locally installed packages


$ dnf upgrade

Applies available updates for packages


$ dnf history

Displays the transaction history for all transactions of the dnf command

2.2. Third party repositories

If you want to install software that is not part of the official Fedora repositories, you have the ability to add third-party repositories. These will be considered whenever you install or upgrade any package. These are called COPR (Cool Other Package Repo)

To enable a COPR use the Command

$ dnf copr enable user/fedoraproject

There is a comprehensive list of all available COPRs here: https://copr.fedorainfracloud.org/. However most of the time you will stumble upon these when searching for alternative installation sources for a package. Many software distributors also automatically add their repository when you install their software so they can distribute updates more easily.

2.3. A note on yum

When browsing packages it’s likely that you will come across commands starting with yum. Yum was the package manager of Fedora until version 22 (2015). It has since been replaced with dnf. However the command is still available to ensure backwards compatibility for scripts or automated software installations. It is encouraged to use dnf now.

3. Desktop Environment

The default desktop environment is Gnome.

There are other alternatives in the official repositories available:

  • XFCE

  • KDE Plasma

  • Cinnamon

  • Mate

  • LXQT

  • LXDE

If you prefer one of them over Gnome they can be installed using the package manager. Although it might make sense for you to directly install a spin that has the desired environment by default. They are called spins and are available on the official Fedora spins website.

4. Fedora resources

5. vogella training and consulting support

Copyright © 2012-2018 vogella GmbH. Free use of the software examples is granted under the terms of the Eclipse Public License 2.0. This tutorial is published under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Germany license.