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When I attempt to install a package, rpm tells me that it's already installed. When I try to remove that same package, it tells me that it's not installed. Forcing installation fails (presumably because it's already installed), removal cannot be forced. Any idea what's going on here?

[ecarroll@x200s extensions]$ sudo rpm -i /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm
warning: /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm: Header V3 DSA/SHA1 Signature, key ID 39256cb2: NOKEY
    package gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch is already installed
[ecarroll@x200s extensions]$ sudo rpm -e /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm
error: package /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm is not installed

Force install:

[ecarroll@x200s extensions]$ sudo rpm --force -i /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm
warning: /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm: Header V3 DSA/SHA1 Signature, key ID 39256cb2: NOKEY
[ecarroll@x200s extensions]$ sudo rpm -e /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm
error: package /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm is not installed

Force remove:

[ecarroll@x200s extensions]$ sudo rpm --force -e /home/ecarroll/Downloads/gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch.rpm
rpm: only installation and upgrading may be forced
share|improve this question
I'm sure you think what you posted is nice, but its not helpful to the rest of us... Please ask a clear question as opposed to insults. – soandos May 30 '11 at 0:33
And its a duplicate to boot. – soandos May 30 '11 at 0:36
It's not a duplicate, the first one was closed. – Evan Carroll May 30 '11 at 0:37
That said, I don't see that this is a bad question. It's a real misunderstanding of the tool that a lot of people probably run in to and look for a solution to. Sure it's PEBKAC, but virtually everything here is - people ask questions here when they're having trouble using something, that's what the site is for. – jcrawfordor May 30 '11 at 0:42
@soandos I have no idea on either point (I'm not a mod). It was closed as nonquestion, but I think if you read the output the issue is obvious (it could have been clearer, but it was there). Perhaps it's not obvious to some people that are familiar with RPM, since it is normal behavior, but I think it's apparent enough that it saying something was installed and then saying it isn't installed would cause confusion. It was only a few sentences edit to clear it up, in any case. As far as duplicate... I don't know. I think this question deserves a chance to live, though. – jcrawfordor May 30 '11 at 0:51
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Packages that are installed are not referred to by the package filename, you must use their name, version, etc. to refer to them. You can get said information by running rpm -qp against the respective package file.

TL;DR: The problem isn't rpm, it's you.

share|improve this answer
That actually worked rpm -e gnome-shell-frippery-0.1.0-1.noarch – Evan Carroll May 30 '11 at 0:38
@Evan: be sure to mark this answer as correct. doing so will help generate a little good will. – jcrawfordor May 30 '11 at 0:56
Fixed. and fixed. I had the intention of marking this as accepted but the gimpy throttle in superuser wouldn't permit it just yet. – Evan Carroll May 30 '11 at 3:37

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