How do I determine RHEL (Red Hat Enterprise Linux) version?

I am a new Linux sysadmin and user. I think we have five RHEL (Red Hat Enterprise Linux) Dell servers in our office. How do I determine the RHEL version? How do I find out RHEL kernel version from the ssh session created by putty.exe?

Introduction – Red Hat Enterprise Linux operating system created for enterprise customers. It is extremely popular among business users and sysadmin due to long-term support, stability and high-quality open source software. This page shows how to find out RHEL version from the command line.

How do I determine RHEL version?

To display the Red Hat Enterprise Linux version use any one of the following command/methods:

  1. To determine RHEL version, type: cat /etc/redhat-release
  2. Execute command to find RHEL version: more /etc/issue
  3. Show RHEL version using command line, rune: less /etc/os-release
  4. RHEL 7.x or above user can use the hostnamectl command to get RHEL version

Let us see all commands in details.

How to check RHEL / Redhat version

Type the following cat command:
cat /etc/redhat-release
Sample outputs:

Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server release 7.5 (Maipo)

To display the RHEL kernel version, type:
uname -r
uname -mrs

How to confirm RedHat Enterprise Linux version using hostnamectl

Simply run the following hostnamectl command:
Sample outputs:

   Static hostname: nixcraft-rhel8
         Icon name: computer-vm
           Chassis: vm
        Machine ID: 1a790a3f946c4936a2cb8dba207d19aa
           Boot ID: 58ebfde49964425ea754814b4ac54432
    Virtualization: kvm
  Operating System: Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.0 Beta (Ootpa)
       CPE OS Name: cpe:/o:redhat:enterprise_linux:8.0:beta
            Kernel: Linux 4.18.0-32.el8.x86_64
      Architecture: x86-64

Other commands to find out RHEL version

One can use the rpm command:
rpm --query redhat-release-server
Sample outputs:


Another option is to run lsb_release command. However, you need to install a package named redhat-lsb-core using the yum command as follows
sudo yum install redhat-lsb-core
## now get RHEL version ##
lsb_release -d
lsb_release -a

LSB Version:	:core-4.1-amd64:core-4.1-noarch
Distributor ID:	RedHatEnterprise
Description:	Red Hat Enterprise Linux release 8.0 Beta (Ootpa)
Release:	8.0
Codename:	Ootpa

A sample session from my RHEL 7 server

Finding or determining RHEL server version using command line


This page showed you various RHEL command to find out your Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) version.

Posted by: SXI ADMIN

The author is the creator of SXI LLC and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.