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Hi friends, before few months ago I searched and read many posts “how to partition my hard disk”. After that I installed gnu linux mint on a / partition and made secondary partition /home for my files such video, music, pictures etc and swap partition of course. I think that / partition is like c:\ partition in dos systems and /home like d:\ but now I think that was my mistake. Now I see that in my /home partition I have many hidden files and folders from my install programs and etc. Now if I preinstall the system with new distro I think to format / partition and nothing to do with /home partition, but my problem I think is in this hidden files? ?? Is there a problem with them or I must delete them? And if I was in mistake how to partition new system...with this two partitions or I must create third partition for my files and with what mount point must be in this third partition. Sorry for may be dummy question and for that my English is not good . Thanks in advance.
user specific settings will usually be placed in hidden files in the users own /home directory. Generally if you install a different distro then, yes, you can pick up the old /home location and keep all your data just fine. It is, however, very possible that the configurations from one distro might not fit effectively with the new ones. standalone applications are usually not so much of an issue, but your .bashrc / .bash_profile / .profile files might not integrate as well with the new distros preferred mechanisms - ubuntu / mint tend to have fairly significantly enhanced features in their shell configuration which could be affected. It's easy enough to delete most of the ~/.whatever directories and files if you wish, there's right there for you.
Thank you acid_kewpie, so if I understand you my /home partition Is like My documents folder in dos systems... I don't wont to keep my settings for programs and etc things in this hidden files . After I change the distribution I will install and configure all programs that I used before. So in my case I must create a / partition and my home dir I wont to be in this partition and always when I change the distribution I will delete them. But I wont to have a partition only with my files pictures videos and etc. that partition I will never delete or format only will mount in new fresh installs. So how can I make this partition...with what mount point must be??? not / and not /home so? I really sorry for that my English is not good and I try to explain what I wont to do may be very stupid...
You know the only people to apologise for their bad English? People who don't need to apologise in the first place. Your English is very good.
You can make a partition wherever you want really. Personally I tend to use a different folder under /home and keep it on the same partition. so whilst you can delete and recreate your user as many times as you wish, the files in /home/my_save_files or wherever wouldn't be affected. You can certainly make that in to a dedicated partition though, and mount it at /home/username/myfiles too if you wish though. Note though that if you have a new user, you may want to ensure the users UID and GID are the same. RedHat based distros start numbering accounts automatically at 500, debian starts from 1000, so if you find yoru user has changed UID, you might need to just change the ownership of the long term files to match the new UID if you don't explicitly set your "normal" user UID in the installer itself.
How often are you planning to compleatly reinstall your OS. If it's only once or twice a year removing config files really does not takes that long.
:>rm -r ~/.* Will remove all the hidden files for the curent users.
For all users
:>rm -r /home/*/.* (as root) Will remove all hidden files for all users.
Although I would recomend against just deleting stuff, you could loose somthing you really need (.wine is a key one). You would be better off moving files to a safe place then you have what you need to fox problems if/when you run into them. Create a new directory then move all hidden files there.
:>cd (Move to your home)
:>mkdir old_config (Create the new directory)
:>mv -r .* old_config (Move all hidden files to the new dir)
You can then go though with the new OS installation as you described. Then when everything is working you can delete the old_config.
mv -r .* old_config
mv: invalid option -- 'r'
Try `mv --help' for more information.
in help I can not see -r option...and can i move dir's without any option..symply
mv .* old_config
Sorry about this was not near an actual linux box when I posted. As has been pointed out it does not make sense to recursively move things, and as a rule I rarely do move things (copy then delete), but as the reason for doing this is to perform a backup that should not be required I thought it was appropriate this time.