Is there a standard for $PATH and the order of things that are supposed to be in there? out of the box Arch Linux doesn't have /usr/local/bin in the $PATH. I want to add it but I'm not sure if there's a predefined pecking order for system paths.

Also where is the right place to do this? for right now I modified /etc/profile but I'm not sure that's the right place in Arch for user modifications. Anyone know if there's a better place?


Arch is a minimalistic linux distribution, so normally there are no other special configuration files which are getting included in some strange placces, modified by system configuration wizards.

/etc/profile is the right place to do this for a system wide configuration.

This file is intended to be used for ALL common Bourne-compatible shells. Shell specifics should be handled in /etc/profile.$SHELL where $SHELL is the name of the binary being run (discounting symlinks)

It is also mentioned in the official FAQ for reloading if your shell can't find a newly installed binary

  • ok. I was debating on whether I should make the change in /etc/profile.d/somefile or something. Which would mean less maintenance if arch update /etc/profile but if there's an order specified in LSB for PATH it might not conform. – xenoterracide Sep 5 '10 at 14:09

By "globally", do you mean for all users? I put my path modifications in ~/.profile, as it affects X applications as well. If you want it in the system profile it's probably best to modify /etc/profile

  • yes by globally I meant all users. – xenoterracide Sep 4 '10 at 23:46

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