Enabling or disabling a repository using Red Hat Subscription Management

Solution Verified - Updated -


  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux
  • Red Hat Subscription Management (RHSM)


  • How to enable a repository using Red Hat Subscription Manager
  • Need to access a repository using Red Hat Subscription Manager
  • How to disable repository using Subscription Manager
  • How to subscribe a child channel using Red Hat Subscription-Manager
  • How can I edit the /etc/yum.repos.d/redhat.repo file?
    • Changes made to redhat.repo are reverted whenever a yum or subscription-manager runs


As systems are subscribed to products, the associated content repositories (identified in the entitlement certificate) are made available to the system. The content repositories are based on the product and on the content delivery network, defined in the baseurl parameter of the rhsm.conf file.

List all available repositories for the system, including disabled repositories:

# yum repolist all
repo id                      repo name                                   status
rhel-6-server                Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6Server            enabled
rhel-6-server-optional-rpms  Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6Server - Optional disabled
rhel-6-server-extras  Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6Server - Extras          disabled

Using Subscription-Manager

subscription-manager provides its own utility to enable & disable repositories ONLY within the redhat.repo file:

To see a list of available repositories:

# subscription-manager repos --list

To enable a specific Red Hat repository:

# subscription-manager repos --enable=rhel-6-server-optional-rpms

To disable a specific Red Hat repository:

# subscription-manager repos --disable=rhel-6-server-optional-rpms

Using Yum-Utils provided yum-config-manager:

The repositories can be enabled or disabled using the yum-config-manager command, which is provided by the yum-utils package:

Note: yum-config-manager is only available for RHEL 6 and later

# yum install -y yum-utils
# yum-config-manager --enable <repo-id>
# yum-config-manager --disable <repo-id>

Enable a repository for a single yum transaction

A repository may be temporarily enabled by using the --enablerepo= option. For example:

# yum install rubygems --enablerepo=rhel-6-server-optional-rpms

Note: if another update is released in the disabled repo, the system will not apply that update unless enabling the repository again. User may encounter dependency issues if a package being updated by the base repo, requires the package from the disabled repo to update as well

Disabling the Subscription-Manager Repository

When a system is registered using Subscription-Manager, the rhsmcertd process creates a special yum repository — redhat.repo.

Maintaining a redhat.repo file may not be desirable in some environments. It can create static in content management operations if that repository is not the one actually used for subscriptions, such as for a disconnected system or a system using a local content mirror.

This default redhat.repo repository can be disabled by editing the Subscription-Manager configuration and setting the manage_repos value to zero (0).

# subscription-manager config --rhsm.manage_repos=0

More information: Working with yum Repos

Commonly used repositories

The repositories you want to enable are going to be dependent on the packages you need to install and the product you are using. For RHEL 7 and below, the names generally follow the format of rhel-<Major Release>-<Product>-rpms. For example rhel-7-server-rpms vs rhel-6-workstation-rpms.

To identify what repository contains a package, you can find all of our packages on the portal using the Package Browser. Some packages or errata are only for specific products and may not apply to your product. You can search the Packages tab of the product page to only see packages for your product.

Base Repos Optional/Development Repos
RHEL 6 rhel-6-server-rpms rhel-6-server-optional-rpms
RHEL 7 rhel-7-server-rpms rhel-7-server-optional-rpms
RHEL 8 rhel-8-for-x86_64-baseos-rpms
RHEL 9 rhel-9-for-x86_64-baseos-rpms

These will provide the most common packages used on a basic system. If you are using a different base product, such as Workstation, replace "server" with "workstation". If you are using a different architecture for RHEL 8, this will be reflected in the repository name.

If you are using a more advanced Red Hat product, refer to the product documentation to find which product specific repositories should be enabled.

Root Cause

subscription-manager maintains the redhat.repo file. Whenever it's run by itself or as a yum plugin, it will set the redhat.repo back to it's last saved state, undoing any manual changes made.

 # head /etc/yum.repos.d/redhat.repo
 # Certificate-Based Repositories
 # Managed by (rhsm) subscription-manager
 # *** This file is auto-generated.  Changes made here will be over-written. ***
 # *** Use "subscription-manager repo-override --help" if you wish to make changes. ***
 # If this file is empty and this system is subscribed consider
 # a "yum repolist" to refresh available repos

You can disable this by disabling "manage_repos" in /etc/rhsm/rhsm.conf OR you can modify the redhat.repo file with the repo-override command.

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