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How to upgrade/downgrade Rubygems:

On Ruby 1.9.x:

tl;dr: Just don't… for now.

Ruby 1.9 ships with rubygems and contains a very buggy “gem-prelude”. It is a gem loading system that can interfere with updating rubygems itself. We do NOT recommend you update to rubygems 1.4 if you're running ruby 1.9.x until we get that sorted out in a future ruby release.

If you absolutely hate kittens and you must upgrade, you're going to have to do something really hokey like:

% alias ruby19="ruby19 --disable-gems"
% alias gem19="ruby19 --disable-gems -S gem"

Even deleting the stock rubygems in 1.9 doesn't fix this situation.

On Ruby 1.8.x:

From rubygems 1.3.x:

Use the Normal Upgrade Recipe below.

From rubygems 1-1.x through 1.2.x:

RubyGems 1.1 and 1.2 have problems upgrading when there is no rubygems-update installed. You will need to use the following instructions if you see “Nothing to update”.

Use the Manual Upgrade Recipe below.

From rubygems < 1.1.x:

Use the Normal Upgrade Recipe below.

Downgrade Recipe

Use sudo/su as appropriate:

$ gem install rubygems-update -v 1.3.7
$ update_rubygems

Replace 1.3.7 with whatever version you want to downgrade to. This recipe can also be used to upgrade to a specific version instead of the latest.

Do make sure that you don't have any other versions of rubygems-update installed when you run the second command.

Upgrade Recipes

Normal Upgrade

Use sudo/su as appropriate:

$ gem update --system

Manual Upgrade

If you have an older version of RubyGems installed, then you can still do it in two steps:

Use sudo/su as appropriate:

$ gem install rubygems-update
$ update_rubygems

Manual Install

If you don't have any RubyGems install, there is still the pre-gem approach to getting software, doing it manually:

Use sudo/su as appropriate:

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