IBM Support

Understanding the AIX Virtual RPM Package for rpm.rte

Question & Answer


When I run rpm -qa, I see " AIX-rpm-n.n.n-n.ppc. 
  1. What is this package?
  2. Why am I sometimes advised to run updtvpkg to update this package?


RPM uses the Berkeley database (Berkeley DB) to keep track of each installed package and its delivered files. AIX installp uses the AIX ODM. 

Most RPM packages depend on basic AIX libraries and executables (like libc.a and ksh). These files are not provided by an RPM package, so RPM is unaware of their existence.
To ensure RPM is aware of the vital binaries and shared objects installed through installp filesets, a virtual package (AIX-rpm) is created which will contain these shared objects, shells, and binaries. This package is created, and updated, by the '/usr/sbin/updtvpkg' script. The AIX-rpm package is incremented by 1 each time updtvpkg is run.
# rpm -qa | grep AIX-rpm
# updtvpkg
Please wait...
# rpm -qa | grep AIX-rpm
The updtvpkg script is run when rpm.rte is installed or updated, however, the script will not be run automatically when other filesets are installed. Sometimes, shared objects are updated through an AIX fileset update, resulting in dependency errors for rpm. These errors have been observed after updates in openssl.base. Users can run /usr/sbin/updtvpkg after an installp fileset update to rebuild the virtual package.


A) For all questions or issues with Toolbox packages, the support is handled by the AIX Open Source Team in the forum:

The AIX Open Source Team provides support through the forum, only. They answer questions, if possible, but they don't own the packages, or formally support them. For true expertise in usage of each package, users should consult the community for each respective package.

** Cases opened to address Toolbox problems will be canceled and users will be referred to the Open Source Forum.
If you experience technical issues accessing the AIX Open Source community or forum, please send a note with the following information to
1. URL of the community forum (and thread if applicable) you are trying to access
2. Screen capture of the error (or detailed description of error)
3. The IBM ID used to log in with when they got the error
4. If you have multiples IBM IDs (old ones, new ones, deleted ones), provide a list of those IDs
5. The version of the Browser, and OS it is running on

B) If there is a problem with installing rpm.rte, or executing the rpm binary file, please open an AIX Case (See the following C section) for assistance.

Examples of rpm.rte issues supported through AIX Support:

- Errors updating or migrating the rpm.rte fileset
- Commands from the rpm.rte fileset coredump, or have runtime errors.

Example of an rpm.rte rpm loading issue:

# rpm -qa
    exec(): 0509-036 Cannot load program /usr/opt/freeware/bin/rpm because of the following errors:
    0509-150 Dependent module could not be loaded.
    0509-022 Cannot load module
    0509-026 System error: A file or directory in the path name does not exist.

This example would be handled through an IBM AIX Support case, and the support team would help resolve the missing modules.

To learn what is provided and supported by the rpm.rte fileset:

# lslpp -f rpm.rte

C) Opening an AIX Support Case

If additional assistance is required due to issues with rpm.rte fileset (see preceding B section), use the following step-by-step instructions to contact IBM to open a case for software with an active and valid support contract.  The technical support specialist assigned to your case will confirm that you have completed these steps.

a.  Document (or collect screen captures) of all symptoms, errors, and messages that might have occurred

b.  Capture any logs or data relevant to the situation

c.  Contact IBM to open a case:

   -For electronic support, visit the IBM Support Community:
   -If you require telephone support, visit the web page:

d.  Provide a good description of your issue and reference this technote

e.  Upload all of the details and data to your case

   -You can attach files to your case in the IBM Support Community
   -Or upload to the IBM Enhanced Customer Data Repository

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Document Information

Modified date:
05 February 2020