Locking Package Versions with Apt and Yum
Oct 29, 2019
1 minute read

Limiting package versions (especially for updates) is a common pain point most enterprise customers will experience at one point or another.

In this blog post I will cover how to do version locking for the 2 most popular enterprise package managers.


Distributions covered/tested:

  • CentOS 7
  • RHEL 7.X


There is an official document on how to do this from RHEL but I’ll boil it down to the most important parts. This utilizes an official RHEL package called yum-plugin-versionlock.

# install plugin
yum install yum-plugin-versionlock

# Specify a version to pin to

# add versionlock for your package
yum versionlock mypackage-${VERSION}*

# install your package with the new versionlock
yum install -y mypackage

# to update your package clear the versionlock
yum versionlock clear *mypackage*
# and the reinstantiate it
yum versionlock mypackage-${VERSION}*
yum update -y mypackage


Distributions covered/tested:

  • Ubuntu 18.04


apt has the concept of package pinning based off of regexes which is extremely useful.

Limiting package updates for apt is as simple as adding a new file:


Package: mypackage
Pin: version /2/
Pin-Priority: 999

The nice thing about this is that this file can actually last through multiple apt upgrade’s.