Tag Archives: Linux

Host Your Own WordPress Site

Introduction

A while back I decided to host my blog on my own servers and cut the cord with WordPress.com. There were no hard feelings really; I just didn’t like the limited options for plugin choices I had. I didn’t like all the extra features they forced me to use that made my blog (response time) slower.

The standalone version of WordPress is much more scaled down and fits my requirements better. The standalone version also allows me to pick and choose from a sea of amazing plugins at my disposal.

Prerequisite

You’ll need to have full (Linux) shell access to the server you’re intending to host this from. I set up my hosting using a CentOS 6.x machine; therefore the instructions I identify here are for that. That said, the instructions won’t stray too far off (requiring a tweak here an there) from those people who choose to use other Linux distributions.

You’ll want to first install a few packages:

# You'll basically need PHP, MySQL 
# As root (or a user with sudoer's permission) type the following:
sudo yum -y install php-fpm php-mbstring php-mcrypt \
             php-mysql nginx mysql mysql-server gawk \
             openssl

Optional FTP Support

FTP support is really nice to have with a WordPress setup! You can use it to automate the installation of plugins through the admin page. This is great for situations where you’re setting up a WordPress account for someone who isn’t too teksavvy. It also allows grants your users enough access to install plugins through WordPress’s administration interface.

I strongly suggest you read my blog entry on Configuring and Installing VSFTPD on CentOS 6 if you’re interested in going this route.

It’s important to note that WordPress functions just fine without an FTP(S) server too!

Step 1 of 8: Prepare our Environment.

To make life really easy (so you can cut and paste this right to your command line without any effort at all), lets create some environment variables.

Please note that this step MUST be ran before any of the other steps are. If you’re returning to this blog entry to resume from a step you left off at, be sure to apply these environment variables again!

Please note that you must be root or have sudoer’s permission to be able to perform any of these tasks successfully on your server.

# Our WordPress user
WPUSER=nuxref

# The FQD you will be serving your data from.  If you
# don't have your own domain, then set this to an
# underscore '_' (without the quotes '')
WPURL=nuxref.com

# Some Database Information
# - what are we going to call our database name?
DBNAME="wordpress_$WPUSER"
# - it's easier to just use the WordPress user account here
#   but if you want to change it to something else; here is
#   where you can do it:
DBUSER=$WPUSER
# - we will want to create a confusing password that others
#   can't guess. I don't recommend you use what i've identified
#   here because anyone else who knows you read my blog will
#   guess this first.  But here is where you should set your
#   database password you intend to use.
DBPASS="v3ryC0nFU51Ng-Pw%"

# If you plan on creating an FTP Account; you'll want to
# populate these variables too. This account does not have
# to be the same as the $WPUSER account. In fact making it
# different (even just slightly) would be a good idea!
# Below i just add '-ftp' to the end of the already
# determined user above.  Feel free to change this.
WPFTPUSER="$WPUSER-ftp"
# Set an FTP password; It would be a good idea to not use
# the one identified below as it's merely display only.
# some special character don't work with VSFTPD (like '!')
# if you plan on using it .
WPFTPPASS="4nt3rP455%rd"

# The following is only used for our SSL Key Generation
COUNTRY_CODE="7K"
PROV_STATE="Westerlands"
CITY="Lannisport"
SITE_NAME="Life as a Lannister"

Step 2 of 8: Create our User Account

You’ll want to create an isolated environment for our client (or you) to work within. By securing an environment; in the event anything is ever compromised, destruction will be limited to what we allow our client access to.

# First create a system directory to host our project.
sudo mkdir -p /opt/$WPUSER/html/static

# Create a dummy, favicon.ico file for now. If you feel
# ambitious, Google this if you're not sure what it's for
# so you can place your own custom one here
touch /opt/$WPUSER/html/static/favicon.ico

# Create System User
sudo useradd nuxref -M --system \
   --comment "$WPUSER WordPress Account" \
   --home /opt/$WPUSER \
   --shell /sbin/nologin

# Secure our new directory we created
chmod 711 /opt/$WPUSER
chown -R $WPUSER.$WPUSER /opt/$WPUSER

If you’ve followed my blog on Securing and Protecting Your CentOS 6 System then you might have wisely chosen to set up disk quotas. If not; then you can skip over to the next step.

# Detect the device using our home directory
DEV=$(df -l -P /opt/$WPUSER | awk 'END{print $1}')
# Restrict Users Disk Quota to 600MB
sudo setquota -u $WPUSER 180000 600000 0 0 $DEV

Step 3 of 8: Generate SSL Keys

We need to generate some Secure Socket Layer (SSL) keys so that we can provide a secure connection for logins. Otherwise our passwords we choose to work with the site could be exposed.

To make things simple, you can use my genssl tool first discussed in an earlier blog I wrote here. available for download from my github page and then just do the following:

# Generate a self signed key:
genssl -s $WPURL
# Install it:
sudo install -m 0400 $WPURL.key /etc/pki/tls/private/$WPUSER.key
sudo install -m 0444 $WPURL.crt /etc/pki/tls/certs/$WPUSER.crt

Or you can simply do the following:

# The following will generate SSL Keys (if you don't have any already)
sudo openssl req -nodes -new -x509 -days 730 -sha256 -newkey rsa:2048 
   -keyout /etc/pki/tls/private/$WPUSER.key 
   -out /etc/pki/tls/certs/$WPUSER.crt 
   -subj "/C=$COUNTRY_CODE/ST=$PROV_STATE/L=$CITY/O=$SITE_NAME/OU=IT/CN=$WPURL"
 
# Permissions; protect our Private Key
chmod 400 /etc/pki/tls/private/$WPUSER.key
 
# Permissions; protect our Public Key
chmod 444 /etc/pki/tls/certs/$WPUSER.crt

Step 4 of 8: Install our WordPress Bundle

Now we need to Download and install WordPress into our environment.

# WordPress Configuration
# Acquire latest version from here https://wordpress.org/download/
# (At the time it was 4.4.2)
wget --no-check-certificate https://wordpress.org/latest.tar.gz -O wordpress.$(date +'%Y.%m.%d').tgz

# Extract our downloaded copy
sudo tar xvfz wordpress.$(date +'%Y.%m.%d').tgz \
    -C /opt/$WPUSER/html --strip 1

# Apply some more permissions
sudo find /opt/$WPUSER/html -type d -exec chmod 755 {} \;
sudo find /opt/$WPUSER/html -type f -exec chmod 664 {} \;
sudo find /opt/$WPUSER/html -exec chown $WPUSER.apache {} \;

# Grant write permissions to a few tools our plugin installers
# will need access to later on:
find /opt/$WPUSER/html/wp-content/ -type d -exec chmod 775 {} \;
sudo chmod 660 /opt/$WPUSER/html/wp-config.php

Step 5 of 8: Configure and Prepare our Database

Now we need to configure our MySQL (or MariaDB) database. First make sure it is running:

# The below command will start the database if it isn't
# already running:
sudo service mysqld status &>/dev/null || \
   sudo service mysqld start

# Next make sure you're system is configured to start
# the database each and every time your server turns on
sudo chkconfig --level 345 mysqld on

Now we need to prepare our database that WordPress can use.

# SQL Initialization
( cat << _EOF
CREATE DATABASE $DBNAME;
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON $DBNAME.* TO "$DBUSER"@"localhost" IDENTIFIED BY " $DBPASS";
FLUSH PRIVILEGES;
_EOF
) | sudo mysql

Step 6 of 8: Configure our Web Hosting Service

Okay now we need to host our website. Effectively linking the database we just prepared with the WordPress software we just installed. We do this as follows using NginX:

# By default (assuming a CentOS installation), we can
# plug into our configuration by writing our data in
# /etc/nginx/conf.d/
# So lets do just that:
cat << _EOF > /etc/nginx/conf.d/wordpress_$WPUSER.conf
#
# $WPUSER WordPress Web Hosting
#
server {
    # Support Web Traffic at port 80
    listen       80;
    server_name  $WPURL;
    root   /opt/$WPUSER/html;

    # Our log files
    access_log  /var/log/$WPUSER/$WPUSER.access.log  main;
    error_log  /var/log/$WPUSER/$WPUSER.error.log;

    # Our main handler
    location / {
        root   /opt/$WPUSER/html;
        index  index.html index.htm index.php;
        # Support Permalink changes
        try_files \$uri \$uri/ /index.php?q=\$request_uri;
    }

    # Anyone logging into our site should do it securely
    location /wp-admin/ {
       # Always redirect to secure site
       rewrite ^/(.*) https://$host/\$1 permanent;
    }
    location /wp-login/ {
       # Always redirect to secure site
       rewrite ^/(.*) https://\$host/\$1 permanent;
    }

    error_page  404              /404.html;
    location = /404.html {
        root   /usr/share/nginx/html;
    }

    # redirect server error pages to the static page /50x.html
    #
    error_page   500 502 503 504  /50x.html;
    location = /50x.html {
        root   /usr/share/nginx/html;
    }

    # Support the favicon (for those wanting to use it)
    location = /favicon.ico {
        root   /opt/$WPUSER/html/static;
    }

    # pass the PHP scripts to FastCGI server listening on 127.0.0.1:9000
    #
    location ~ \.php\$ {
        fastcgi_pass   127.0.0.1:9000;
        fastcgi_index  index.php;
        fastcgi_param  SCRIPT_FILENAME  \$document_root\$fastcgi_script_name;
        include        fastcgi_params;
    }

    # Deny access to the wp-config file
    location ~ /wp-config\.php {
        deny  all;
    }
}

server {
    # We should listen on a secure URL too so that we can
    # hide our admin login credentials from prying eyes
    listen       443;
    server_name  $WPURL;
    root   /opt/$WPUSER/html;

   ssl on;
   ssl_certificate /etc/pki/tls/certs/$WPUSER.crt;
   ssl_certificate_key /etc/pki/tls/private/$WPUSER.key;
   ssl_session_timeout  5m;

   # Secure our site by only allowing the TLS protocol
   ssl_protocols TLSv1 TLSv1.1 TLSv1.2;
   ssl_ciphers 'ECDHE-RSA-AES128-GCM-SHA256:ECDHE-ECDSA-AES128-GCM-SHA256:ECDHE-RSA-AES256-GCM-SHA384:ECDHE-ECDSA-AES256-GCM-SHA384:DHE-RSA-AES128-GCM-SHA256:DHE-DSS-AES128-GCM-SHA256:kEDH+AESGCM:ECDHE-RSA-AES128-SHA256:ECDHE-ECDSA-AES128-SHA256:ECDHE-RSA-AES128-SHA:ECDHE-ECDSA-AES128-SHA:ECDHE-RSA-AES256-SHA384:ECDHE-ECDSA-AES256-SHA384:ECDHE-RSA-AES256-SHA:ECDHE-ECDSA-AES256-SHA:DHE-RSA-AES128-SHA256:DHE-RSA-AES128-SHA:DHE-DSS-AES128-SHA256:DHE-RSA-AES256-SHA256:DHE-DSS-AES256-SHA:DHE-RSA-AES256-SHA:AES128-GCM-SHA256:AES256-GCM-SHA384:AES128:AES256:AES:DES-CBC3-SHA:HIGH:!aNULL:!eNULL:!EXPORT:!DES:!RC4:!MD5:!PSK';
   ssl_prefer_server_ciphers on;
   ssl_session_cache  builtin:1000  shared:SSL:10m;

   access_log  /var/log/nginx/$WPUSER.access.log  main;
   error_log  /var/log/nginx/$WPUSER.error.log;

   location / {
      root   /opt/$WPUSER/html;
      index  index.html index.htm index.php;
      # Support Permalink changes
      try_files \$uri \$uri/ /index.php?q=\$request_uri;
   }

   error_page  404              /404.html;
   location = /404.html {
      root   /usr/share/nginx/html;
   }

   # redirect server error pages to the static page /50x.html
   #
   error_page   500 502 503 504  /50x.html;
   location = /50x.html {
       root   /usr/share/nginx/html;
   }

   # Handle favicon
   location = /favicon.ico {
       root   /opt/$WPUSER/html/static;
   }

   # pass the PHP scripts to FastCGI server listening on 127.0.0.1:9000
   #
   location ~ \.php\$ {
      fastcgi_pass   127.0.0.1:9000;
      fastcgi_index  index.php;
      fastcgi_param  SCRIPT_FILENAME  \$document_root\$fastcgi_script_name;
      include        fastcgi_params;
   }

   # Deny access to the wp-config file
   location ~ /wp-config\.php {
      deny  all;
   }
}
_EOF

Now restart our web services

# Ensure our web browser and php handler will start
# even if our server is restarted
chkconfig --levels 345 php-fpm on
chkconfig --levels 345 nginx on

# The following just makes sure we reload and take
# on our new configuration.  If we're not running
# then we start the services up
service php-fpm status &>/dev/null && \
   service php-fpm restart || \
   service php-fpm start

service nginx status &>/dev/null && \
   service nginx restart || \
   service nginx start

Step 7 of 8: Optionally Setup an FTP Account

Most people can skip this step; it again presumes you’ve followed my other blog on Configuring and Installing VSFTPD on CentOS 6. If you have not gone here or have set up FTP your own way, you can also skip this step and move on with Configuring WordPress.

# Create a WordPress Plugins FTP Account
echo $WPFTPUSER >> /etc/vsftpd/users.passwd
echo $WPFTPPASS >> /etc/vsftpd/users.passwd
 
# Protect Password
chmod 600 /etc/vsftpd/users.passwd
chown root.root /etc/vsftpd/users.passwd
 
# Now convert content into a db structure
db_load -T -t hash -f /etc/vsftpd/users.passwd /etc/vsftpd/virtual.users.db
chmod 600 /etc/vsftpd/virtual.users.db
chown root.root /etc/vsftpd/virtual.users.db
 
cat << _EOF > /etc/vsftpd/virtual.users/$WPFTPUSER
local_root=/opt/$WPUSER/html
# -------------------------------------------------------------------------
# User
# -------------------------------------------------------------------------
guest_enable=YES
guest_username=apache
local_root=/opt/$WPUSER/html
# -------------------------------------------------------------------------
# Permissions
# -------------------------------------------------------------------------
# write_enabled is required if the user is to make use of any of the
# anon_* commands below
write_enable=YES
# give the user the ability to make directories
anon_mkdir_write_enable=YES
# give the user the ability delete and overwrite files
anon_other_write_enable=YES
# give the user the ability upload new files
anon_upload_enable=YES
# Give the user permission to do a simple directory listings
dirlist_enable=YES
# Give the user permission to download files
download_enable=YES
# if the user has can upload or make new directories, then this will be
# the umask applied to them
anon_umask=0002
# delete failed uploads (speaks for itself)
delete_failed_uploads=NO
_EOF
 
sudo chmod 600 /etc/vsftpd/virtual.users/$WPFTPUSER
sudo chown root.root /etc/vsftpd/virtual.users/$WPFTPUSER

# Ensure our FTP Server will restart if our server
# is ever restarted:
sudo chkconfig --level 345 vsftpd on
# Update Service (to read in new configuration)
sudo service vsftpd status &>/dev/null && \
    service vsftpd restart || \
    service vsftpd start

Step 8 of 8: Configure WordPress

If you successfully pulled off all of the earlier steps, then you shouldn’t have any trouble from this point forward. The hard part is done with!

Wordpress Database SetupWordpress InstallationYou now need to open up your browser and access your new WordPress website to continue with the setup. Simply visit your website by browsing to http://your.wordpress.url/ (whatever you set this up as).

First you’ll be immediately presented with webpage that needs some information about the database we set up back in Step 5 (an environment variables defined in Step 1.

After you press the [Submit] button, you’ll then be asked to define some basic information about the blog you intend to set up. You can change all this later, so don’t worry. The important fields here are the administrator user and password you create.

You’re done now and ready to use WordPress

Great WordPress Plugins

The following plugins are worthy of a mention:

Credit

Please note that this information took me several days to put together and test thoroughly. I may not blog often; but I want to re-assure the stability and testing I put into everything I intend share.

If you like what you see and wish to copy and paste this HOWTO, please reference back to this blog post at the very least. It’s really all I ask.

SABnzbd Installation for CentOS 7.x

Introduction

SABnzbd is a versatile tool written in Python specifically designed to take an NZB-File as input and then retrieve all of the content defined inside of it for you automatically. Recently there have been new improvements with SABnzbd in the past few releases. So I thought I’d share a working out of the box solution using RPMs. In addition to this, I’ve packaged up my notification script I wrote which can further enhance this great product.

SABnzbd and Usenet

First off; lets summarize Usenet for those who don’t use it or aren’t already familiar with it. In the simplest terms: Usenet is a great big fucking mess; a total disaster. It’s basically a location where literally anyone with access to it can post/upload all they want at their free will anonymously. Don’t get me wrong; this is cool too because it’s basically one very large hard drive without anyone telling you what you can and can’t place onto it. Seriously though, just consider for a second what your computer would look like if you allowed absolutely anyone who has access to the internet to upload content freely and without rules to it. You’d probably run out of hard disk space quickly; and you’ll be left with a lot of content everywhere. Well; that’s exactly what Usenet is (greatly simplified); it’s one large centralized location filled with petabytes of data. The thing with Usenet though is… it isn’t, and won’t be running out of disk space anytime soon.

The good news is, (thankfully) people sift through the heaps of information constantly being posted (onto Usenet) using automated tools regularly. These tools that do the sifting are generally known as Indexers. I talk more about this in another blog I wrote here a while back. But basically whenever an Indexer finds some useful data, it records the location as to where it was found. Indexers record this information in a special file call an NZB-File. NZB-Files are effectively treasure maps containing the coordinates on Usenet to which a specific piece of data can be located at.

NZB-Files are like Treasure Maps

NZB-Files are like Treasure Maps

It should be known that if you’re planning on posting/uploading stuff to Usenet yourself (for backup purposes or what have you), most (good) software will generate you an NZB-File afterwards allowing you to retrieve your data back again later on.

Now lets throw SABnzbd into the picture because it specifically is designed to retrieve content based on an NZB-File it’s provided. The process looks a little like this:

SABnzbd Download Process

SABnzbd Download Process

  1. Acquire NZB-File: Presumably you already have it because you’re just trying to retrieve data you posted in the past. But alternatively, the NZB-File could have also been acquired from and Indexer too.
  2. Give SABnzbd Access to NZB-File: You simply hand off your treasure map to the application who’s actually going to go out there and get the content for you.

    This is truly the bread and butter of SABnzbd. The next set of steps identified below are all fully automated (and done behind the scenes) for you. They require nothing from you, but it’s worth explaining it for those who are interested.

  3. SABnzbd Establishes a Connection to Usenet: The catch with SABnzbd is it’s merely a vessel for fetching the data. You need to have provided it access to Usenet to which it will fetch this data from. Thus SABnzbd must (obviously) connect to a Usenet provider in order to retrieve data from Usenet itself. This step is put in place to make sure you’ve got yourself an account with a provider!
  4. SABnzbd Downloads Content: Segment by segment, each portion of your data is downloaded and re-assembled. There are lots of additional things that go on too such as making sure the data isn’t damaged and attempting to correct it (all automatic) if it is.
  5. SABnzbd Saves Data:If all goes well; and in most circumstances it will. You will have all of the content successfully retrieved at this point!

SABnzbd has tons of automation built into it; I’m really just focusing on the basics here to get you going.

I Want To Try It

Of course you do! So here’s the thing; if you’ve already connected to my repository here, you can get it by simply typing the following:

# Download and install SABnzbd plus the Notification Addon
# on CentOS 7.x using the nuxref repositories located
# here: http://nuxref.com/repo/
yum install -y --enablerepo=nuxref \
               --enablerepo=nuxref-shared \
               sabnzbd sabnzbd-script-notify

You can also just visit the location I host these packages directly (via my repository) here and download the RPMs for yourself:

Note: I provided the source rpms optionally; they are not required unless you want to build this for yourself from scratch.

SABnzbd Environment

It’s worth giving you a quick rundown of how the RPM installs itself upon your computer: First off, it creates a general user/group called sabnzbd. By default this is the user/group it will run as. To grant a user access to all of the content retrieved by SABnzbd, you can just add yourself to the sabnzbd group:

# as root; we can add ourselves to the sabnzbd group
usermod -a -G sabnzbd myuserid

# Note: if this user is logged in, they will have to log out and log
#       back in to have these new security credentials noticed. 

You can start it up with the command:

# as root; start up SABnzbd:
systemctl start sabnzbd.service

You’ll be able to access the web page through your browser by punching in http://localhost:9080.

You can set it up to survive reboots with the following command:

# as root; start up SABnzbd when the machine is first
# powered on:
systemctl enable sabnzbd.service
  • All of your log files will show up in /var/log/sabnzbd/sabnzbd.log
  • All of configuration will get written to /etc/sabnzbd/sabnzbd.conf
  • All of the variable data (file processing, etc) will be located in /var/lib/sabnzbd/*. In fact this is a very important directory because unless you configure things differently, all downloaded content will appear in /var/lib/sabnzbd/complete.

Firewall Configuration

The package will provide you the files needed to set up the firewall and make SABnzbd available to you from other stations by simply doing the following:

# as root; start up SABnzbd when the machine is first
# powered on (assuming your network is set up to the `home` zone
firewall-cmd --zone=home --add-service sabnzbd --permanent

# Now reload your firewall to take on the new change:
firewall-cmd --reload

SABnzbd Notifications

SABnzbd can keep you posted on what it’s doing by sending you emails when a download completes (or fails). It can send you an notification on Pushbullet, and a few others too.

If you want to use the Notify script I wrote, you’re already almost set up and ready to go because it’s in the sabnzbd-script-notify rpm you already installed.

To enable it, you simply need to need to access the Notifications tab from within the SABnzbd Configuration section.

SABnzbd Notification Setup

SABnzbd Notification Setup

  1. Select the Enable notification script checkbox
  2. Select the Notify.py script from the dropdown list next to the Script category
  3. Next to the Parameter category, you must specify the URL(s) identifying which service(s) you want to notify.

    Depending on what you want plan on alerting, the URL(s) you specify in the Parameter field will vary. You can get a better understanding of the URL options supported here.

Credit

This blog took me a very long time to put together and test! The repository hosting alone accommodates all my blog entries up to this date. If you like what you see and wish to copy and paste this HOWTO, please reference back to this blog post at the very least. It’s really all I ask.

Special thanks to Safihre for reaching out to me and allowing me to contribute to their product with the notification add-on.

Sources

Repository Hosting

Hosting Your Own RPM Repository

Introduction

There are lots of reasons why you might want to host your own RPM repository. A few reasons up front:

  • Speed: Performing a yum (or dnf) update from one of your locally hosted repositories is much faster than checking the ones on the internet!
  • Cost: If you run a business, then you know bandwidth can be expensive. If Linux is the operating system your developers and/or employees use, then hosting the repository internally means they won’t waste bandwidth each time one of them performs a system update. You’ll have downloaded everything once, and provided a central controlled share point they can apply all of their updates from.
  • Retention: Over time, your successfully deployed systems will age and the packages that were once readily available for it may be a lot harder to acquire! Sometimes it’s a good thing to create and manage your own internal repository so that you always have access to the exact RPMs you used to deploy/create your development environment with. This is especially the case for that one rare day that arises requiring you to go back and debug a legacy system of yours. If the packages are already available to you locally; you should have no problem reproducing any detected problems since you’ll be able to reconstruct their environment exactly.
  • Mock: I love this tool; mock allows you to dynamically generate different distributions of CentOS/Fedora (new and old) allowing you to build your applications to test them in it. You simply create a mock environment of the distribution of interest. In this new environment, you can do whatever it was you wanted to, then you can easily blow it away when you’re done. The best part about mock is that it allows you to build/test things without hauling in all of the development libraries into your native working environment. Quite frankly, I couldn’t have hosted or tested half of the things I do in all my blogs and my repository without it. Mock generates it’s ‘throw/away’ environments by connection to a yum repository and setting itself up. If you host your own repositories, it can greatly speed up this process.
  • Consistency: If everyone in your department were to reference the same rpm repository instead of one of the hundreds of mirrors available on the internet, you would consistently be hosting and sharing the same packages internally with your team. This is fantastic in a software development environment where everyone should be using the same packages anyway. This isn’t to say that all public CentOS mirrors are different, but they do go up and down from time to time. They also all synchronize themselves with whatever the latest and greatest at different times too.
  • Mirrors: Even if you just host your own mirror publicly, you’d be doing the Linux community good! You’d become another server of the hundreds already out there providing a source for free software! Your efforts would offload network congestion others face and speed up everyone’s Linux experience.
  • Custom Media: Hosting your own RPM packages can grant you the power to build your own custom media. You can accomplish the same task without hosting internally, but it’s much (,much) slower! This will make for a great topic in another blog though since this process is a topic of it’s own. I do however explain how to host your own custom repositories in this blog though!

Local Hosting Environment

The whole hosting process will take up some disk-space… 150GB or so if you decide to host everything I identify here. Nothing major, but worth noting for those with smaller disk drives.

The first thing you need to do is decide where you’ll host everything from. I will use the following directories for this blog entry:

Directory Details
/var/share/repo The location we’ll host the repository from.
/var/share/isos The location we’ll store our ISO image files in.

First let’s make sure our directories exist:

# Repository data will go here: /var/share/repo
[ ! -d /var/share/repo ] && \
   mkdir -p var/share/repo

# ISOs downloaded/kept will go here: /var/share/isos
[ ! -d /var/share/isos ] && \
   mkdir -p var/share/isos

You’ll want to have the following tools on hand as well if you plan on hosting your own repositories:

# Mirroring tools
yum install -y rsync lftp

# Repository management tools
yum install -y createrepo yum-utils find

Repository Hosting

The next few sections focus on the following repositories; you may or may not need them all. So feel free to just use what you need.

Distribution 64-Bit 32-Bit
CentOS 5.11 x86_64 i386
CentOS 6.8 x86_64 i386
CentOS 7.2 x86_64 n/a

Note: The blog utilizes the lftp tool for all of the synchronization, but the rsync command is also documented in the comments if you prefer that route as well. It’s also worth noting that you can re-run these mirror commands again and again to keep your local repository updated with the latest.

CentOS 5.11

64-bit

# Change to our ISO directory
pushd /var/share/isos

wget http://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/isos/x86_64/CentOS-5.11-x86_64-bin-DVD-1of2.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-5.11-x86_64-DVD1.iso
wget http://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/isos/x86_64/CentOS-5.11-x86_64-bin-DVD-2of2.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-5.11-x86_64-DVD2.iso

# Create temporary directories to work in
mkdir dvd1
mkdir dvd2

# Mount it
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-5.11-x86_64-DVD1.iso dvd1
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-5.11-x86_64-DVD2.iso dvd2

# CentOS Base Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/os ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/os

# CentOS Updates Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/updates ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/updates

# CentOS Extras Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/extras ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/extras

# Setup EPEL location
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5/x86_64/epel ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5/x86_64/epel

# Create a fixed link to newest repo
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/5/x86_64
ln -snf ../../5.11/x86_64/os os
ln -snf ../../5.11/x86_64/updates updates
ln -snf ../../5.11/x86_64/extras extras
popd

# Set up other repositories
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64
ln -snf ../../5/x86_64/epel epel
popd

# Mirror repository
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd1/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/os/
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd2/CentOS/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/os/Packages/
 
# Cleanup
umount dvd1
umount dvd2
rmdir dvd1
rmdir dvd2
popd

# Mirror (5.11) Updates
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/updates/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/updates/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/5.11/updates/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/updates"

# Mirror (5.11) Updates
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/extras/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/extras/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/5.11/extras/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/x86_64/extras"

# EPEL: (see https://admin.fedoraproject.org/mirrormanager/mirrors/EPEL/5 for list of servers)
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/fedora-enchilada/epel/6/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/5/x86_64/epel/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /fedora/epel/5/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/5/x86_64/epel"

32-bit

# Change to our ISO directory
pushd /var/share/isos

wget http://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/isos/i386/CentOS-5.11-i386-bin-DVD-1of2.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-5.11-i386-DVD1.iso
wget http://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/isos/i386/CentOS-5.11-i386-bin-DVD-2of2.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-5.11-i386-DVD2.iso

# Create temporary directories to work in
mkdir dvd1
mkdir dvd2

# Mount it
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-5.11-i386-DVD1.iso dvd1
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-5.11-i386-DVD2.iso dvd2

# CentOS Base Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/os ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/os

# CentOS Updates Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/updates ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/updates

# CentOS Extras Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/extras ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/extras

# Setup EPEL Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/5/i386/epel ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/5/i386/epel

# Create a fixed link to newest repo
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/5/i386
ln -snf ../../5.11/i386/os os
ln -snf ../../5.11/i386/updates updates
ln -snf ../../5.11/i386/extras extras
popd

# Set up other repositories
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386
ln -snf ../../5/i386/epel epel
popd

# Mirror repository
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd1/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/os/
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd2/CentOS/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/os/Packages/
 
# Cleanup
umount dvd1
umount dvd2
rmdir dvd1
rmdir dvd2
popd

# Mirror (5.11) Updates
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/updates/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/updates/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/5.11/updates/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/updates"

# Mirror (5.11) Extras
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/5.11/extras/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/extras/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/5.11/extras/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/5.11/i386/extras"

# EPEL: (see https://admin.fedoraproject.org/mirrormanager/mirrors/EPEL/5 for list of servers)
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/fedora-enchilada/epel/6/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/5/i386/epel/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /fedora/epel/5/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/5/i386/epel"

CentOS 6.8

64-bit

# Change to our ISO directory
pushd /var/share/isos

wget http://mirror.its.dal.ca/centos/6.8/isos/x86_64/CentOS-6.8-x86_64-bin-DVD1.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-6.8-x86_64-DVD1.iso
wget http://mirror.its.dal.ca/centos/6.8/isos/x86_64/CentOS-6.8-x86_64-bin-DVD2.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-6.8-x86_64-DVD2.iso

# Create temporary directories to work in
mkdir dvd1
mkdir dvd2

# Mount it
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-6.8-x86_64-DVD1.iso dvd1
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-6.8-x86_64-DVD2.iso dvd2

# CentOS Base Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/os ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/os

# CentOS Updates Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/updates ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/updates

# CentOS Extras Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/extras ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/extras

# Setup EPEL location
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6/x86_64/epel ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6/x86_64/epel

# Create a fixed link to newest repo
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/6/x86_64
ln -snf ../../6.8/x86_64/os os
ln -snf ../../6.8/x86_64/updates updates
ln -snf ../../6.8/x86_64/extras extras
popd

# EPEL Repository Mirror
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64
ln -snf ../../6/x86_64/epel epel
popd

# Mirror repository
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd1/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/os/
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd2/Packages/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/os/Packages/

# Cleanup
umount dvd1
umount dvd2
rmdir dvd1
rmdir dvd2
popd

# Mirror (6.8) Updates
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/6.8/updates/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/updates/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/6.8/updates/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/updates"

# Mirror (6.8) Extras
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/6.8/extras/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/extras/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/6.8/extras/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/x86_64/extras"

# EPEL: (see https://admin.fedoraproject.org/mirrormanager/mirrors/EPEL/6 for list of servers)
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/fedora-enchilada/epel/6/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/6/x86_64/epel/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /fedora/epel/6/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/6/x86_64/epel"

32-bit

# Change to our ISO directory
pushd /var/share/isos

wget http://mirror.its.dal.ca/centos/6.8/isos/i386/CentOS-6.8-i386-bin-DVD1.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-6.8-i386-DVD1.iso
wget http://mirror.its.dal.ca/centos/6.8/isos/i386/CentOS-6.8-i386-bin-DVD2.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-6.8-i386-DVD2.iso

# Create temporary directories to work in
mkdir dvd1
mkdir dvd2

# Mount it
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-6.8-i386-DVD1.iso dvd1
mount -o loop,ro CentOS-6.8-i386-DVD2.iso dvd2

# CentOS Base Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/os ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/os

# CentOS Updates Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/updates ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/updates

# CentOS Extras Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/extras ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/extras

# EPEL Repository Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/6/i386/epel ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/6/i386/epel

# Create a fixed link to newest repo
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/6/i386
ln -snf ../../6.8/i386/os os
ln -snf ../../6.8/i386/updates updates
ln -snf ../../6.8/i386/extras extras
popd

# Set up other repositories
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386
ln -snf ../../6/i386/epel epel
popd

# Mirror repository
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd1/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/os/
rsync -av --ignore-existing dvd2/Packages/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/os/Packages/

# Cleanup
umount dvd1
umount dvd2
rmdir dvd1
rmdir dvd2
popd

# Mirror (6.8) Updates
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/6.8/updates/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/updates/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/6.8/updates/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/updates"

# Mirror (6.8) Extras
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/6.8/extras/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/extras/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/6.8/extras/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/6.8/i386/extras"

# EPEL: (see https://admin.fedoraproject.org/mirrormanager/mirrors/EPEL/6 for list of servers)
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/fedora-enchilada/epel/6/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/6/i386/epel/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /fedora/epel/6/i386/ /var/share/repo/centos/6/i386/epel"

CentOS 7.2

64-bit

# Change to our ISO directory
pushd /var/share/isos

# CentOS 7.2
[ ! -d /var/share/isos/ ] && mkdir -p /var/share/isos/
wget http://mirror.its.dal.ca/centos/7.2.1511/isos/x86_64/CentOS-7-x86_64-Everything-1511.iso \
   -O /var/share/isos/CentOS-7.2.1511-x86_64-Everything.iso

# CentOS Base Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/os ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/os

# CentOS Updates Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/updates ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/updates

# CentOS Extras Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/extras ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/extras

# EPEL Repository Mirror
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/epel ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/epel

# Create a fixed link to newest repo
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64
ln -snf ../../7.2/x86_64/os os
ln -snf ../../7.2/x86_64/updates updates
ln -snf ../../7.2/x86_64/extras extras
popd

# Set up other repositories
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64
ln -snf ../../7/x86_64/epel epel
popd

# Mount it
mount -o loop,ro /var/share/isos/CentOS-7.2.1511-x86_64-Everything.iso \
    /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/os

# Update our fstab file so we persistently do this on reboots; This saves disk space
sed -i -e '/CentOS-7\.2\.1511-x86_64-Everything\.iso/d' /etc/fstab
echo '/var/share/isos/CentOS-7.2.1511-x86_64-Everything.iso /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/os iso9660 loop,ro,auto 0 0' >> /etc/fstab
# If you prefer not to run the above command, you can follow through with the same rsync
# commands identified above and mirror the contents of the iso to disk

# Mirror (7.2) Updates
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# Updates: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/7.2.1511/updates/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/updates/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/7.2.1511/updates/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/updates"

# Mirror (7.2) Extras
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# EPEL: (see https://www.centos.org/download/mirrors/ for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/centos/7.2.1511/extras/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/extras/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /centos/7.2.1511/extras/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64/extras"

# Mirror EPEL
# In the future you can run these commands again and again to update your repository
# EPEL: (see https://admin.fedoraproject.org/mirrormanager/mirrors/EPEL/7 for list of servers)
# rsync -av --ignore-existing rsync://mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/fedora-enchilada/epel/7/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/epel/
# or via lftp:
lftp mirror.csclub.uwaterloo.ca -e "mirror --verbose /fedora/epel/7/x86_64/ /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/epel"

Web Hosting

Once you’ve got your repositories mirrored, you need to host them. Here is the easiest way to do so:
If you’re (planning on) using NginX, then the following will get you going:

# Install nginx (if it's not there already)
yum install nginx -y

# Enable for future reboots
systemctl enable nginx.service

# Start it up
systemctl start nginx.service

cat << _EOF > /etc/nginx/default.d/repo.conf
location /repo/ {
   alias         /var/share/repo/;
   autoindex on;
}
_EOF
# Reload
systemctl reload nginx.service

Now you should be able to access your website by visiting the server you set this up on with /repo as the path. ie: http://localhost/repo

SELinux

Users running SELinux in enforcing mode will want to do the following so that they’re repository can be hosted properly:

# make sure /var/share/repo can host website content without conflicting
# with SELinux
semanage fcontext -a -t httpd_sys_content_t '/var/share/repo(/.*)?'

YUM Repositories

Now we’ll want to update our servers around our office, or maybe just on this PC we’re using to point to our new repositories. Here is probably the easiest way:

# Disable any existing repository setup (the following has
# to be ran as root):
pushd /etc/yum.repo.d/
sed -e 's/^\(enabled\)=.*/\1=0/g' \
   fedora*.repo centos*.repo epel*.repo &>/dev/null
popd

# Set this variable to the ip/host of the machine you set up your
# repository on:
MYREPOADDR=localhost

# Now install our new file:
cat << _EOF > /etc/yum.repo.d/centos.internal.repo
[internal-base]
name=CentOS \$releasever - \$basearch - Base
baseurl=http://$MYREPOADDR/repo/centos/\$releasever/\$basearch/os/
enabled=1
priority=1
gpgcheck=0
skip_if_unavailable=False

[internal-updates]
name=CentOS \$releasever - \$basearch - Updates
failovermethod=priority
baseurl=http://$MYREPOADDR/repo/centos/\$releasever/\$basearch/updates/
enabled=1
priority=1
gpgcheck=0
skip_if_unavailable=True

[internal-extras]
name=CentOS \$releasever - \$basearch - Extras
failovermethod=priority
baseurl=http://$MYREPOADDR/repo/centos/\$releasever/\$basearch/extras/
enabled=1
priority=1
gpgcheck=0
skip_if_unavailable=True

[internal-epel]
name=CentOS \$releasever - \$basearch - Internal EPEL
failovermethod=priority
baseurl=http://$MYREPOADDR/repo/centos/\$releasever/\$basearch/epel/
enabled=1
priority=1
gpgcheck=0
skip_if_unavailable=True
_EOF

You can easily take the examples provided here and alter them for other repositories you wish to host.

Custom Repositories

Perhaps you’re picking and choosing RPMs from a ton of different sources, or you’re building your own. It’s a good idea not to touch the repositories we’re already mirroring. Leave them exactly the way they are. However, you can create your own repository instead that you can place your personal collection of rpms in:

# Lets presume we want to start a custom CentOS 7 (64-bit) repository.
# we'll call it 'custom' for now, but you can call it whatever you want

[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom ] && \
    mkdir -p /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom

# Create a fixed link to our repo
pushd /var/share/repo/centos/7.2/x86_64
ln -snf ../../7/x86_64/custom custom
popd

# Okay... now you can drop all the RPMs you want into this custom repository.
# just copy them in; no strings attached.
cp my.awesome.application-1.0.0-1.x86_64.rpm

# The next step is to make the repository accessible by yum
# If you're using dnf, there is no problem, these commands still apply:

# First we want to reset our repodata folder.  This probably won't
# exist the first time you do this, but in the future, when you add
# more rpms into this directory, this will be an essential step:
[ -d /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom/repodata ] && \
    rm -rf /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom/repodata

# Now lets clean out any duplicate/old RPM entries
# This is optional; it basically looks for 2 RPMs of the same name
# but of different versions and only keeps the newest.  If you like
# hanging on to all of the versions of your software, you don't
# need to run the below command.
repomanage -o /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom/repodata | \
   xargs rm -f

The next step requires us to generate a comps file. These are XML files that define details of our repository. You can get complicated and define it yourself if you like, but to make things simple, you can just use this script i wrote which will generate one on the fly based on the directory you specify it to parse:

#!/bin/sh
# Name: updaterepo
# Author: Chris Caron <lead2gold@gmail.com>
# URL: See http://nuxref.com for details
# Description:
#   A simple script for creating a repository directory.
#
# Syntax: updaterepo <path_to_repository_hosting_rpms>
#
REPODIR=$1
if [ -z "$REPODIR" ]; then
   echo "You must specify a repository directory to scan (containing rpms)."
   exit 1
fi

if [ ! -d "$REPODIR" ]; then
   echo "You must specify a repository directory to scan (containing rpms)."
   exit 1
fi

# Ensure we're dealing with absolute paths
pushd $REPODIR &>/dev/null && REPODIR=$(pwd) && popd &>/dev/null

# Some Default Variables; please feel free to change these to
# suit your own needs and package identification. Whatever you
# specify here will become a 'group' as far as yum and dnf are
# concerned allowing you to run (set $ID according):
#   yum groupinstall custom
ID="custom"
NAME="Core"
DESC="Custom Built Packages"

# Generate a comps file for a repository dynamically
COMPSFILE=comps-$ID.xml
COMPSDIR=$REPODIR/repodata
COMPS=$COMPSDIR/$COMPSFILE

# Directory Management
[ -d $COMPSDIR ] && rm -rf $COMPSDIR
[ ! -d $COMPSDIR ] && mkdir -p $COMPSDIR

FILES=$(find -L $REPODIR -mindepth 1 -maxdepth 1 -type f -name "*.rpm" -exec basename {} \;)

   cat << _EOF > "$COMPS"
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE comps PUBLIC "-//REDHAT//DTD Comps info//EN" "comps.dtd">
<comps>
  <group>
    <id>$ID</id>
    <name>$NAME</name>
    <description>$DESC</description>
    <default>True</default>
    <uservisible>True</uservisible>
    <packagelist>
_EOF
for FILE in $FILES; do
   PFILE=$(rpm -qp "$REPODIR/$FILE" --nosignature --queryformat="%{NAME}" 2>/dev/null)
   cat << _EOF >> "$COMPS"
         <packagereq type="default">$PFILE</packagereq>
_EOF
done
cat << _EOF >> "$COMPS"
    </packagelist>
  </group>
  <category>
    <id>$ID</id>
    <name>$NAME</name>
    <display_order>99</display_order>
    <grouplist>
      <groupid>$ID</groupid>
    </grouplist>
  </category>
</comps>
_EOF

# Now rebuild our repo information
createrepo -d -q -g $COMPS $REPODIR

Place the script file above into your /usr/bin directory if you like (called updaterepo) and call it on any directory you want to turn into a repository from then on:

# Make sure our new script is executable
chmod 775 /bin/updaterepo

# Now call it against any directory we want to turn into a repository
[ ! -d /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom ] && 
    mkdir -p  /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom

# Now we can copy our rpms into this directory at will.
# Then we just need to run this command when we're done to apply
# our changes. This will allow people who are pointing to our
# repository to see these new changes we made and access it via yum/dnf
updaterepo  /var/share/repo/centos/7/x86_64/custom


You're done! Now you can update your <strong>/etc/yum.repos.d/</strong> to include this new location with each yum call you make! Just use the other examples already provided in this blog as a template!

<h1>Mock</h1>
<a href="https://github.com/rpm-software-management/mock/wiki" target="_blank">Mock</a> is a fantastic tool for RPM management.  It's also a great tool for someone who just wants to test and see if they're code will run on another platform.  You could almost think of Mock as a poor man's <a href="https://linuxcontainers.org/" target="_blank">Linux Container</a> which are pretty popular these days.  Mock isn't as contained, but it can accomplish the same feat and is even faster since it doesn't have the (Linux) container overhead.

Mock is set up as follows:

# first install it (as root)
yum install -y mock

# If you followed all of the instructions above, then this will pull mock
# out of your internal epel repository! Nice!

# Now just add your user account you usually use on your system
# (a non-root user).  This user will be granted mock privileges.
# substitute [User name] below with the username you usually use:
usermod -a -G mock [User name]

Just like that' you're now ready to create mock environments. Now by default, mock is configured to fetch it's information from the external repositories on the internet. But it's configuration is really easy to get ahold of and update. Check out the /etc/mock directory.

You can now edit the mock environment you wish to host and optionally update the repositories to point to your own. For example, pick a file like /etc/mock/epel-7-x86_64.cfg which is used to generate a 64-bit Enterprise Linux (RedHat/CentOS) 7.x environment.

You'll see entries like this which will look very familiar (it's a yum/dnf configuration file entry just like the ones identified above). You can comment out the mirrorlist entry and swap it with your own local repository.

...  ...
[base]
name=BaseOS
# comment out the mirrorlist reference:
# mirrorlist=http://mirrorlist.centos.org/?release=7&arch=x86_64&repo=os
# point to our own local repository instead:
baseurl=http://localhost/repo/centos/7/x86_64/os/
failovermethod=priority
gpgkey=file:///usr/share/distribution-gpg-keys/centos/RPM-GPG-KEY-CentOS-7
gpgcheck=1

[updates]
name=updates
enabled=1
# comment out the mirrorlist reference:
# mirrorlist=http://mirrorlist.centos.org/?release=7&arch=x86_64&repo=updates
# point to our own local repository instead:
baseurl=http://localhost/repo/centos/7/x86_64/updates/
failovermethod=priority
gpgkey=file:///usr/share/distribution-gpg-keys/centos/RPM-GPG-KEY-CentOS-7
gpgcheck=1

[extras]
name=extras
enabled=1
# comment out the mirrorlist reference:
# mirrorlist=http://mirrorlist.centos.org/?release=7&arch=x86_64&repo=extras
# point to our own local repository instead:
baseurl=http://localhost/repo/centos/7/x86_64/extras/
failovermethod=priority
gpgkey=file:///usr/share/distribution-gpg-keys/centos/RPM-GPG-KEY-CentOS-7
gpgcheck=1

[epel]
name=epel
# comment out the mirrorlist reference:
# mirrorlist=http://mirrors.fedoraproject.org/mirrorlist?repo=epel-7&arch=x86_64
# point to our own local repository instead:
baseurl=http://localhost/repo/centos/7/x86_64/updates/
failovermethod=priority
gpgkey=file:///usr/share/distribution-gpg-keys/epel/RPM-GPG-KEY-EPEL-7
gpgcheck=1

...  ...

You can also just copy and paste one of the config files to another and change it around. Add repositories, remove some; the config file for mock is really straight forward if you use another as a template.

Mock is pretty straight forward to use. You just need to pass it in the environment you're using with each call you make to it.

# Initialize a Mock Environment of Enterprise Linux 7 (64-bit):
mock -r epel-7-x86_64 --init

# The above command works because a /etc/mock/epel-7-x86_64.cfg file exists.
# mock is relatively quiet and doesn't output a lot of information which can
# sometimes make you unsure if it's actually doing anything.  So it doesn't
# hurt to also get in the habit of adding -v to every single mock action you
# perform.

# You can install RPMs into your mock environment easily with:
mock -v -r epel-7-x86_64 install hostname vi

# The following command will cause us to leave our current native environment
# and access the mock environment (an advanced chroot basically):
mock -v -r epel-7-x86_64 --shell

# Once inside, you can do whatever you want; just press Ctrl-D or type 'exit'
# to return back to your normal environment.

# You can even rebuild a source rpm package from another distribution
# into one you might use.  For example, perhaps you visited pkgs.org and saw
# a newer version of an awesome application available for Fedora 24, but
# can't get it for CentOS 7.  Well you can download the src.rpm file and
# rebuild it using mock:
mock -v -r epel-7-x86_64 --rebuild awesome.application-v2.0.0-1.fc24.src.rpm \
    --resultdir=awesome.app

# I added the --resultdir= on the line above to tell mock that after it rebuilds
# our new RPMs for CentOS 7, it places them into a directory called 'awesome.app'.
# This isn't necessary, but makes it easier to find the RPMs when the build is
# complete.

Credit

If you like what you see and wish to copy and paste this HOWTO, please reference back to this blog post at the very least. It’s really all I ask.

Sources

  • Mock: A fantastic development tool that allows you to dynamically generate a fully functional development environment for a CentOS/Red Hat/Fedora distribution of your choice. It allows you to keep development libraries out of your native (working) environment keeping things clean.
  • Some good repositories worth mirroring (in no particular order):
    • CentOS 5.x, 6.x and 7.x: Here is a list of all of the mirrors you can sync from.
    • Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux (EPEL): CentOS/Red Hat users shouldn't be without this one. It has tons of the building blocks you might need to reconstruct things with.
    • NuxRef: Yes... my repository; I mean why not, right?
    • Fedora: Bleeding edge distributions don't stick around long. After a year or so, you'll be hard-pressed to find RPMs. It might be wise to mirror the distribution you're using if you don't plan on upgrading anytime soon. There is enough information in this blog to mirror a Fedora repository if you want to do so.