The layout of the directory hierarchy — questions like “where does this file belong?” or “what is this directory for?”.

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2
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1answer
216 views

How should I install software from source so that I can make my configuration manageable and reproducible?

I work with a lot of scientific software on Linux distributions (normally Debian variants and Red Hat variants). In order to maximize performance and get access to the latest features, it's often ...
1
vote
2answers
359 views

Filesystem organization for software in HOME

When installing software in $HOME, how do the linux filesystem hierarchy directories map to subdirectories of $HOME? I am asking this question so that I can write a build system that picks reasonable ...
4
votes
1answer
324 views

configuration ethics (esthetics): /etc vs $HOME

Ok this may not be a very concrete question, and is perhaps subject to taste, yet I'm struggling to get this right so here it goes. I have a computer. This computer has linux on it (thank god). Arch ...
4
votes
2answers
135 views

Location of application files?

Does Linux/Unix have a unified location for Application files, like "~/Library/Application Support" on Mac OS X? I'm making a Python script that will need to store permanent but changing data, and I ...
13
votes
2answers
3k views

Permissions/ownership of /usr/local/bin

From what I understand, the right place to put your own scripts is /usr/local/bin (for instance a script I use to back up some files). I notice that this folder is currently (by default) owned by ...
9
votes
1answer
4k views

Where should a local executable be placed?

I have an executable for the perforce version control client (p4). I can't place it in /opt/local because I don't have root privileges. Is there a standard location where it needs to be placed under ...
1
vote
2answers
94 views

Where are “headers” for other languages kept?

If I were to write a library for a C-incompatible language (like D), where would be the best place to install my "header files" to? usr/include seems like a bad idea, since the FHS says it's for ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Recommended location of node.js applications in linux filesystem?

Where is the conventionally accepted location of node.js/express web apps, in a linux file system? Currently I've got a subdirectory in /opt/ but I'd like to hear other people's view on this...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

Deploy libs in hard-coded dir

I have a set of libraries and some apps that depend on it. Some of these libraries names might conflict with already installed libraries. The easiest way for me to deploy them would be Install the ...
1
vote
3answers
412 views

Are .bz2 files inside /var/lib/pengine safe to delete?

My problem is that my /var partition is over 80% (total size: 4.9G). I was reviewing the files into this partition and I saw a file which has 3.4G. (/var/lib/pengine) I dig into that /pengine file ...
0
votes
1answer
664 views

/run in Debian Squeeze

I'm running Debian Squeeze (6.0.1) on a NAS (LinkStation, mipsel). I installed minidlna from unstable and noticed the daemon won't start because it can't create /run/minidlna. After a little googling ...
6
votes
2answers
6k views

How to copy only matching files, preserving subdirectories

Is there a way to do this: "How can I copy a subset of files from a directory while preserving the folder structure?", but without using rsync? Is it possible to be done using only cp, find and grep? ...
1
vote
0answers
377 views

Directory/file naming conventions when storing media collection on Linux

I am building a NAS/HTPC that will operate under Debian (Wheezy, probably). I am trying to design the directory schema for what will be stored on the server so that everything is nice and uniform for ...
2
votes
2answers
460 views

What is an appropriate naming structure for storing application packages?

I need to determine an appropriate directory naming structure for a package management system. The original directory structure was not POSIX-compliant in any way and certainly not UNIX-style (you'll ...
8
votes
2answers
4k views

How can you move (or copy) all files to a directory with the same filename prefix?

Using Bash So let's say I have a bunch of files randomly placed in a parent directory ~/src, I want to grab all the files matching a certain suffix and move (or copy) them to a ~/dist directory. ...
5
votes
2answers
794 views

What's the difference between /etc/rc.d/rc*.d and /etc/rc*.d

I know that rc*.d directories are used at startup, or reboot, or so on time, for starting or stopping programs. Can anybody explain me what's the difference between the rc*.d folders placed under the ...
35
votes
3answers
8k views

What is the difference between /tmp and /var/tmp?

On most FHS systems, there is a /tmp folder as well as a /var/tmp folder. What is the functional difference between the two?
1
vote
1answer
2k views

XDG user directories

After installing Linux Mint Debian edition my .config/user-dirs.dirs looks like this: # This file is written by xdg-user-dirs-update # If you want to change or add directories, just edit the line ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Where in “/” should extra disks be mounted?

According to Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unix_directory_structure http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filesystem_Hierarchy_Standard extra disks should not be mounted in /mnt/ according to the ...
7
votes
2answers
831 views

What's the origin of rc, rc.d, share, proc in Linux?

I don't think I am a newbie at all, but I still can't figure out many abbreviations' origin like rc, rc.d, share, proc... I've heard someone says rc is "run command", .d is directory, but I'm not ...
3
votes
3answers
307 views

bash function to find a directory recursively

How can I write a bash-function that finds a specific parent directory. Here's my setup: /home/user/dev/project1/branch1/deeply/nested/module/structure The app-server used for devs is located at: ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Why the unix bin directory named in that way?

I thought the bin directory is the place for binary files. If so, what about script files? Should they be placed somewhere else? What's the history of bin directory and where should I put script ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Directories with binary files in Linux

I noticed that when I install new application there are a few possible directories where the resulting binary file will be placed. You can install with packaging manager, compile with make, ...
1
vote
1answer
593 views

What's the difference between `/usr/share/emacs/site-lisp/` directory and `/usr/share/emacs23/site-lisp/` directory?

I use Emacs 23 on my system. I received a file from a colleague (who has a different Linux distro) to add to the /usr/share/emacs/site-lisp/ directory. As I worked to do this, I noticed another, ...
6
votes
2answers
254 views

Where should I place a downloaded tarball?

I have downloaded the ChromePlus tarball and extracted it to my home directory. The extracted folder contains an executable that I can double-click to launch ChromePlus. So I assume I do not need to ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the .Trash-500 and .Trash-1000 directories?

I have a DNS-321 NAS drive which apparently runs Linux, so I logged in via ssh and I see .Trash-500 and .Trash-1000 directories. I realize that they're for trash, but why do I need two? Inside of them ...
7
votes
1answer
635 views

What is the purpose of `/etc/group-`

On a standard Linux distribution (e.g. Ubuntu) there is usually /etc/group and /etc/group-, where the second one is only readable by root. man group only describes /etc/group. Thus my question: What ...
4
votes
1answer
366 views

What's the name of the top-level directory

I am using Ubuntu. I know by using cd ~/ , I can go to home/ directory. But if I want to go to the directory (I do not know the official name of this directory) which contains etc/, var/, opt/, ... ...
5
votes
2answers
134 views

Where to install local software that runs before /usr is available?

I'm writing a local program to be called by a udev IMPORT{program} rule. Normally, I'd install local software in /usr/local, but these udev rules are run when block devices appear. So they're running ...
4
votes
2answers
142 views

Where is a good place to put applications that come pre-compiled?

Certain applications like Blender and Eclipse come precompiled in a tarball. Usually I put the directories in my home folder and access them from the command line. Is there a better place to put them ...
2
votes
2answers
111 views

how to have find on a directory with a changing pattern?

I have a folder structure like this: /domains/some-domain-1/applications/j2ee-apps /domains/some-domain-2/applications/j2ee-apps /domains/some-domain-3/applications/j2ee-apps What is the best way ...
6
votes
2answers
478 views

Why `.` is displayed by `ls`?

After reading the question When you type “ls -a”, what is the significance of “.” and “..”?, I have a similar one. Why to display .? I mean, is there any directory where cd . would not work? How is ...
5
votes
3answers
401 views

When you type “ls -a”, what is the significance of “.” and “..”?

Whenever you type ls -a into the command prompt, you usually get all of your folders, files, and then you see that the first two entries are . and .. Just curious, but what is the significance of ...
10
votes
5answers
4k views

What's so special about directories whose names begin with a dot?

I was wondering what the difference between these two were: ~/somedirectory/file.txt and ~/.somedirectory/file.txt It's really difficult to ask this on Google since I didn't know how to explain ...
7
votes
3answers
6k views

Should I put application into /usr/local or /usr/local/share?

What are the "standards" -- should I put application (not just binary, but entire distribution) to /usr/local or /usr/local/share. For example scala or weka -- it contains examples, binaries, ...
58
votes
7answers
18k views

What is the Linux equivalent to C:\Program Files?

I understand that in Windows as well as Linux and Unix, a program|application|software can be installed in any directory. Also if packages are installed using the distribution's packaging system, ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Where to store media files on a shared linux server

I want to start using our home server as a media server for movies and shows, the question is where is the most appropriate place to store them? The most appropriate places seems to be: /var My ...
2
votes
1answer
179 views

Why is iwconfig in /sbin?

My Ubuntu boot has iwconfig living in /sbin. I was under the impression that /sbin is usually for programs that are required for bootstrapping, or at least need to be available before /usr is ...
2
votes
1answer
245 views

Why are there so many files and folders within the folder of Tomboy?

I have 142 notes in Tomboy but I don't understand why is there such an amount of files and folders created inside the main folder of Tomboy. In there, there are 5 subfolders, named "0", "1"... "4" and ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How does /dev/fd relate to /proc/self/fd/?

$ ls -l /dev/stdin /dev/fd/0 lrwx------ 1 tim tim 64 2011-08-07 09:53 /dev/fd/0 -> /dev/pts/2 lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 15 2011-08-06 08:14 /dev/stdin -> /proc/self/fd/0 $ ls -l /dev/pts/2 ...
280
votes
3answers
93k views

What is the purpose of the lost+found folder in Linux and Unix?

There is a folder at the root of Linux and Unix operating systems called /lost+found/ What is it for? Under what circumstances would I interact with it? How would I interact with it?
18
votes
3answers
3k views

Standard and/or common directories on Unix/Linux OSes

Coming from the Windows world, I have found the majority of the folder directory names to be quite intuitive: \Program Files contains files used by programs (surprise!) \Program Files (x86) contains ...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

What do I install into a given install prefix

Which directories should I expect to have in an install prefix when I'm writing makefiles? I've noticed that in the common prefix /usr, there is no /etc, yet there is an /include dir, which isn't in ...
-2
votes
1answer
646 views

“Clean” Filesystem Hierarchy

The Linux filesystem hierarchy is full of unused folders that only exist for historical reasons. Do any distros install with only the directories that are actually used?
12
votes
4answers
3k views

What is the difference between /etc and /usr/local/etc

I am developing a daemon that needs to store lots of application data, and I noticed that on my system (Fedora 15), there is a /usr/local/etc directory. I've decided to install my daemon to ...
8
votes
3answers
4k views

File and directory naming conventions

I want to refactor the files and directories on my system. However I am not sure what is best practice. After reading this question and it's answers I assume the most important part is to be ...
-1
votes
2answers
1k views

Is the linux directory structure obsolete and obtuse? [closed]

I genuinely feel that the Linux directory system presents an obstacle for users migrating from other systems as well as being a bottleneck for the evolution of Linux itself. Rest assured I am not here ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

The common practice to share file for all users on the same machine? [duplicate]

There is a server with several users. A user may want to read another user's files (few gigabytes) and may want to put processed files in other's directory. What's the common practice to do it? I ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Mounting a device — role of /dev, /media and /mnt, and the mount command [closed]

I have several closely related questions about what happens when I insert a CD. The files on the CD /media/Ubuntu\ 11.04\ i386/, but from what I've seen /dev/cdrom is also involved. What is the ...
32
votes
2answers
10k views

What is this new /run filesystem?

I just ran df -h a minute ago and noticed a filesystem has been added that I'm not familiar with. Does anyone know why /run exists? Is this something that's been added by the kernel? By Arch Linux? ...