Adding a New Repository

On Photon OS, you can add a new repository from which tdnf installs packages. To add a new repository, you create a repository configuration file with a .repo extension and place it in /etc/yum.repos.d. The repository can be on either the Internet or a local server containing your in-house applications.

Be careful if you add a repository that is on the Internet. Installing packages from untrusted or unverified sources might put the security, stability, or compatibility of your system at risk. It might also make your system harder to maintain.

On Photon OS, the existing repositories appear in the /etc/yum.repos.d directory:

ls /etc/yum.repos.d/

To view the format and information that a new repository configuration file should contain, see one of the .repo files. The following is an example:


The repository settings details are as follows:

  • The minimal information needed to establish a repository is an ID and human-readable name of the repository and its base URL. The ID, which appears in square brackets, must be one word that is unique among the system’s repositories; `.

  • The baseurl is a URL for the repository’s repodata directory. For a repository on a local server that can be accessed directly or mounted as a file system, the base URL can be a file referenced by file://. Example:


  • By using metalink, you can point to multiple URLs to download the repomd.xml file. A sample metalink file is as follows:

    cat metalink

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
    <metalink version="3.0" xmlns="" type="dynamic" pubdate="Wed, 05 Feb 2020 08:14:56 GMT" generator="mirrormanager" xmlns:mm0="">
      <file name="repomd.xml">
    <hash type="sha1">478437547dac9f5a73fe905d2ed2a0a5b153ef46</hash>
    <hash type="sha512">6c6fbfba288ec90905a8d2220a0bfd2a50e835b7faaefedb6978df6ca59c5bce25cc1ddd33023e305b20bcffc702ee2bd61d0855f4f1b2fd7c8f5109e428a764</hash>
       <resources maxconnections="1">
    <url protocol="http" type="http" location="IN" preference=“100”></url>

    In the metalink file, provide the preference for each url, so tdnf first tries to sync the repository data from the mirror which has the highest preference. If it fails due to any reason, tdnf will sync to the next mirror url with the lower preference than before one.

    Note: Ensure that the shasum for respomd.xml in all the mirrors should be same

  • The gpgcheck setting specifies whether to check the GPG signature.

  • The repo_gpgcheck setting allows tdnf to verify the signature of a repository metadata before downloading the repository artifacts. When repo_gpgcheck is set to 1 in the tdnf.conf file, all repositories will be checked for the metadata signatures. The default value is 0. If a repository has repo_gpgcheck enabled,a repomd.xml.asc file is downloaded and the API equivalent of gpg --verify repomd.xml.asc repomd.xml is done. If repomd.xml.asc is missing, repository is deactivated. If repomd.xml.asc fails to verify, the repository is deactivated. The public key for verification must be manually installed for the initial implementation.

    Note: Ensure that you have installed libgcrypt for this implementation.

  • The gpgkey setting furnishes the URL for the repository’s ASCII-armored GPG key file. tdnf uses the GPG key to verify a package if its key has not been imported into the RPM database.

    The repository configuration also supports public keys that are remote for the gpgkey option. So, the URLs starting with http, https, or ftp can be used for gpgkey.

    For example: gpgkey=

  • The enabled setting tells tdnf whether to poll the repository. If enabled is set to 1, tdnf polls it; if it is set to 0, tdnf ignores it.

  • The skip_if_unavailable setting instructs tdnf to continue running if the repository goes offline.

  • The retries setting in the repository configuration specifies the number of retries when downloading a file throws an error. The default is 10.

  • The timeout setting specifies the number of seconds that a download is allowed to take or 0 for no limit. Note that this is an absolute value and may interrupt large file downloads.

  • The minrate setting specifies the limit below which if the download rate falls, tdnf will abort the download. The default value is 0 (no limit).

  • The maxrate setting specifies the maximum download rate (throttle). The default value is 0 (no limit).

  • You can use the skip metadata download settings to skip the download of metadata files for repositories with a lot of packages. When you skip the download of the metadata files, it improves the download time of the packages and the processing time of refreshing the cache.

    The following list describes the benefits and drawbacks of the skip metadata settings:

    • skip_md_filelists: The skip_md_filelists=1 setting deactivates the download of the complete list of files in all packages. The setting improves the download and processing time but affects the repoquery queries for files. The default value is 0.

    • skip_md_other: The skip_md_other=1 setting deactivates the download of miscellaneous data like the changelog data of packages. The setting improves the download and processing time but affects the repoquery queries for changelogs. The default value is 0.

    • skip_md_updateinfo: The skip_md_updateinfo=1 setting deactivates the download of the update info data. The setting improves the download and processing time but affects the output of the updateinfo command. The default value is 0.

  • Other options and variables can appear in the repository file. The variables that are used with some of the options can reduce future changes to the repository configuration files. There are variables to replace the value of the version of the package and to replace the base architecture. For more information, see the man page for yum.conf on the full version of Photon OS: man yum.conf

The following is an example of how to add a new repository for a local server that tdnf polls for packages:

cat > /etc/yum.repos.d/apps.repo << "EOF"
name=Local In-House Applications(x86_64)

Because this new repository resides on a local server, make sure the Photon OS machine can connect to it by mounting it.

After establishing a new repository, you must run the following command to update the cached binary metadata for the repositories that tdnf polls:

tdnf makecache
Refreshing metadata for: 'VMware Photon Linux 1.0(x86_64)Updates'
Refreshing metadata for: 'VMware Photon Extras 1.0(x86_64)'
Refreshing metadata for: 'Local In-House Applications(x86_64)'
Refreshing metadata for: 'VMware Photon Linux 1.0(x86_64)'
Metadata cache created.
Last modified November 8, 2023: Update (3799256)