I’m a big CentOS fan. I think servers these days should either be Ubuntu Servers or CentOS based, and nothing else, if you’re going the Linux route.
CentOS 5.3, on the x86_64 platform, seemed to have an issue where yum would cause a traceback, with file.x86_64 0:4.17-15.el5_3.1. There is a bug open for it, but it apparently doesn’t happen on all systems.
The magic around this is to really just run yum clean all, and then run yum update. What that basically does is it cleans all packages that are cached in the system, as well as removes all header files used for dependency resolution.
I haven’t heard jokes about RPM hell in a long time… I am thinking that its mostly disappeared, and largely this is thanks to dependency resolution provided for by yum.