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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Here you can find information about fou4s errors, known bugs and how to setup a network download server.

General questions and error messages

This is a list of error messages from fou4s, that cause users to be confused or frustrated. Hopefully, some explanation helps :-)
  • What are packman/supplementary updates?
    Fou4s is capable of downloading packages from other sources than YOU. You can specify an rsync server (sorry - no HTTP/FTP!), and fou4s will search all RPM files there, generated patch descriptions and process them like normal updates. See /etc/fou4s.conf and look for the commented "Server=" lines as examples. To answer the original question: Packman infos can be found at Supplementary updates are from SuSE. See also fou4s(1) for information.
  • A script was found, what shall I do?
    Currently the script-"packages" provided by SuSE are used to download truetype fonts or nvidia drivers, that can't be installed from CD because of legal issues. Scripts require interactive mode of fou4s, because fou4s can't know if you really want to install nvidia drivers or truetype fonts. You can also choose not to run the script using the skip (s) option when running fou4s --interactive. If you want to run the script, although it was skipped before, delete the appropriate line from /var/cache/fou4s/skipped-packages.$HOSTNAME.$suseversion
  • WARNING: different versioning scheme: foo: 1.2.1 > 1.0 = true
    This means, that the structure of the version from the old package is different from the new package. The true or false indictates the guess of fou4s, if the other version number is newer or not. If you get this warning with "= false" at the end (and fou4s guesses right), you can put the specific package on the IgnoreList in fou4s.conf to suppress the Warning.
  • [: too many arguments
    This is a bug in fou4s. Please send me the output of bash -vx fou4s --ri <your options> &>fou.log
  • gpg: no valid OpenPGP data found. the signature could not be verified
    The fou4s build key was not imported into your keyring (or if you are running fou4s as root on SuSE >= 8.0: the RPM keyring). This should not happen, please tell me exactly how you installed fou4s!
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Known limitations, bugs and hints

Fou4s can't be perfect ...
  • Current business products have more than one update tree (e.g. CORE9 +
    SLES9 + SDK). Currently there is no possibility to check all those trees because SUSEPRODUCT is handled as a single entity within fou4s. As a workaround, you can tell fou4s to use a different config file for the other two trees or run it with --product=XXX multiple times.
  • Autodetection of SuSE business products may fail in some cases
    If you get 404 errors, you have to supply SuSEProduct and SuSEVersion in fou4s.conf. Please tell me, which business product you are using. Please note, that normal update servers don't contain business product updates, you must use fou4s --server -w to get an updated list of servers containing business product updates. Currently, there is only one server available for business products: (see fou4s.conf).
  • Packages from other directories require an rsync server
    Non-update packages can only be downloaded, if the server supports rsync. Rsync is used to get recursive directory listings. Fou4s converts this listing to patch descriptions, that can be used for comparison. One of the servers given with Server= must be an rsync server to make this work. See /etc/fou4s.conf for examples (packman, supplementary updates).
  • FTP servers can't be used over a proxy
    Sorry, wget can't read the index pages generated by most proxies. Maybe some day fou4s will be capable of reading such a html index for wget.
  • Installation of pending patches does not work
    A pending patch means, that there are e.g. 5 updates in an update description, but not all of them are installed on the system. If the update description contains "UpdateOnlyInstalled = false", and the -a option is given, pending patches cannot be installed.
  • Failed http downloads don't cause an error message from fou4s
    There seems to be a bug in wget, returning 0 (ok) as return value, if the -r (recursive) option is specified. Fou4s uses -r for http servers, so there may be no "Download failed" message, if something wrong happens with downloads from a http server (during fou4s -u).
  • Can I update from SuSE 8.1 to 8.2?
    No, fou4s cannot do cross-distribution upgrades for you. This is also not possible via YOU, so I don't feel bad ;-) Use YaST if you want to do this (as I do), or try apt4rpm from
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Networking information

How to use fou4s in a networked environment (more than one machine uses an update tree).
  • How to setup a multi-server update tree (r/w)
    The easiest solution is to share /var/cache/fou4s of the master machine via nfs (read/write) and mount it at the same position on the clients. The master machine is the first that runs fou4s --auto at night. The slave machines run fou4s --auto a little bit later. Fou4s will only download packages, that are not installed on the master server.
  • How to setup a multi-server update tree (r/o)
    On installations with only a few different clients (e.g. lots of SuSE 8.2 machines with the same packages installed), you can use fou4s --auto --host x for one of them, additionally to the normal fou4s --auto call. Repeat the fou4s --auto --host call for each host with different packages. If there are too many different hosts, you can also run fou4s --auto --all to download the packages (maybe several times with different --suseversion) and then fou4s -e on the slave machines (of course a little bit later). The CacheDir on the slave machines must be set to a local directory. The RpmPath must point to the directory mounted from the server.
  • Older SuSE versions can't download packages for SuSE 8.1 and later
    Unfortunately the patch description file format has changed, and the path of the package on the update server cannot be determined any more. To perform downloads, the missing information (arch) is retrieved from the file /var/adm/YaST/InstSrcManager/IS_CACHE_0x00000001/DATA/descr/ packages. If you run fou4s on another machine that downloads for several SuSE servers with --all, copy the given file from an 8.1 machine into the same directory on the download machine.
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