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Old 08-28-2008, 07:59 PM   #1
xusword
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question about disk space management in Linux compare to Windows


Hi all:

When I am using Windows XP, I realized I have to manually remove installation/update files windows kept. Also, there are some no so eco-friendly programs such as antivirus and acdsee that consume harddrive space like viruses.

If I don't do that once in a while, my c drive will be full.

Preparing to migrate to Linux in the near future, I wonder if Linux user have similar issues.

In Linux, do all the programs put their generated files (temp files, log files, etc) under user's home folder? Are those garbage easy to locate?
How do most Linux distros treat system update files?

thanks
 
Old 08-28-2008, 08:39 PM   #2
matthewg42
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The answer is a little complicated.

The Linux filesystem has places for apps to put temporary files /tmp and /var/tmp, which are cleared periodically by scheduled (cron) jobs and in the case of /tmp, at boot time.

Many apps will use these directories, sometimes quite heavily.

Some apps do not use these system wide directories. For example, Mozilla Firefox and Google Earth will both create quite a lot of cache files somewhere in your home directory.

There are tools to help you find out where your disk space is going, and these are invaluable when cleaning off files which are hogging a lot of space, and which you don't really want.

For example, the file size view in the file manager konqueror is really useful. Have a look at the screenshots on this page for a look at that an another similar tool.
 
Old 08-28-2008, 09:07 PM   #3
pinniped
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Most configuration files are in /etc (but custom config files can be created on a per-user basis and stored in hidden directories in the user's home directory - hidden files and directories begin with '.')

If you use a package manager, all system-wide config files are purged if you uninstall a program. Per-user config files still remain though.

FireFox and similar keep cache data and so on in each user's home directory in a .mozilla subdirectory.

Many temporary files are stored in /tmp - files in that directory are deleted periodically (if the file hasn't been accessed for a while) and all are deleted on reboot.

Package managers need to put the downloaded packages somewhere; that is distro-dependent. There is usually an option to delete the package after install but the common default is to leave the package; you need to check the documentation for your distribution and package manager. On Debian systems, the packages are in /var/cache/apt/archives
 
Old 08-29-2008, 05:06 PM   #4
xusword
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thanks

Those are very helpful information. I will look into those disk management tools
 
  


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