How to upgrade software or install security patches for Slackware Linux

You can always use Slackware package management tool such as slackpkg to upgrade software or install security patches for your Slackware system. However, the ftp server mirrors took sometimes to update the latest software or security patches to their server. So the best way is to upgrade them yourself. This is an example on how to upgrade software or install security patches for Slackware Linux. First thing you need to do is to subscribe the Slackware security mailing list from Slackware website. To do this, visit Slackware mailing list at Slackware official website. The picture below is an example of the current Slackware mailing list page:

Slackware mailing list subscription page screenshot image.

It is easy to subscribe the Slackware security mailing list. You just have to email Slackware security team and mention what mailing list you are going to subscribe. The detail can be found in the Slackware mailing list subscription page. You'll start receiving security mailing list in your email when you successfully completed the mailing list subscription procedure.

Upgrade software or install security patches for Slackware Linux

You'll receive email when there is an upgrade or security patch for Slackware. See the example screenshot below:

Slackware mailing list for security patches screenshot image

This tutorial shows how to upgrade or patch Mozilla Firefox as an example. When there is a Slackware security notification in your email inbox, read the email and choose the correct update package version for your Slackware system. Click the link to download the package. Save the package in your Slackware user home directory. See the example screenshot below:

Slackware download security patch screenshot image

The software download in progress. Wait until the process complete.

Software download progress screenshot image

When the download finished, switch to command line terminal and login as root. Use Slackware upgradepkg command to upgrade the software. See the example below:

root@slackware:~# upgradepkg /home/luzar/Desktop/mozilla-firefox-3.0.8-i686-1.tgz

+==============================================================================
| Upgrading mozilla-firefox-3.0.7-i686-1 package using /home/luzar/Desktop/mozilla-firefox-3.0.8-i686-1.tgz
+==============================================================================

Pre-installing package mozilla-firefox-3.0.8-i686-1...

Removing package /var/log/packages/mozilla-firefox-3.0.7-i686-1-upgraded-2009-03-28,16:12:35...
- - -
- - -
Installing package mozilla-firefox-3.0.8-i686-1...
PACKAGE DESCRIPTION:
mozilla-firefox: mozilla-firefox (Mozilla Firefox Web browser)
mozilla-firefox:
mozilla-firefox: This project is a redesign of the Mozilla browser component written
mozilla-firefox: using the XUL user interface language. Firefox empowers you to
mozilla-firefox: browse faster, more safely and more efficiently than with any other
mozilla-firefox: browser.
mozilla-firefox:
mozilla-firefox: Visit the Mozilla Firefox project online:
mozilla-firefox: http://www.mozilla.org/projects/firefox/
mozilla-firefox:
Executing install script for mozilla-firefox-3.0.8-i686-1...

Package mozilla-firefox-3.0.7-i686-1 upgraded with new package /home/luzar/Desktop/mozilla-firefox-3.0.8-i686-1.tgz.

root@slackware:~#

If you installed firefox plugins such as Adobe Flash player, you have to copy the plugins manually. When the Firefox installation is complete, change directory to /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.X/plugins, where X is firefox previous version. Copy the plugins to the new firefox directory. See the example below on how to do this:

root@slackware:~# cd /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.7/plugins
root@slackware:/usr/lib/firefox-3.0.7/plugins# ls
libflashplayer.so*
root@slackware:/usr/lib/firefox-3.0.7/plugins# cp * ../../firefox-3.0.8/plugins

Now we can safely remove the old firefox version with rm -r command. See the example below:

root@slackware:/usr/lib/firefox-3.0.7/plugins# cd ../..
root@slackware:/usr/lib# ls -l | grep firefox
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 13 2009-03-28 16:12 firefox -> firefox-3.0.8/
drwxr-xr-x 3 root root 4096 2009-03-28 16:12 firefox-3.0.7/
drwxr-xr-x 14 root root 4096 2009-03-28 07:46 firefox-3.0.8/
root@slackware:/usr/lib# rm -r firefox-3.0.7/
root@slackware:/usr/lib#

Switch back to the kde x-window and start Firefox. The new version of Firefox started and it will check the compatibility for add-ons you installed in the previous version.

Firefox check compatibility screenshot image

You'll get the latest Firefox version updated page which means you have successfully upgraded and patched the software.

Firefox successfull upgrade screenshot image

That's all. Upgrading and patching your Slackware is not a hard and complicated job as many people said. Make it a priority so that your Slackware system always secure.

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