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Old 02-15-2004, 04:33 AM   #1
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Question Linux filesystem layout

Can anyone recommend a good source (web, MAN, Book, etc.) for understanding the layout of the linux filesystem. (i.e. /usr/bin, /usr/sbin, /etc, /var, etc.)

There are just so many directories, and I would like to be able to understand what they all mean and why files go where they go.

Old 02-15-2004, 05:23 AM   #2
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This is one place to look:

Hope this helps.

Last edited by druuna; 02-15-2004 at 05:25 AM.
Old 02-15-2004, 03:20 PM   #3
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I hear you....there seems to be about 10 different places where you can install a program....
Old 02-15-2004, 03:30 PM   #4
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actualy you can install a program anywere, the folers /bin /sbin are not nessesary, look in your bash profile, there are varieable (i 4get there exact anems but you cant miss them one has sbin and the other has bin in it), each on lists the directory were the corespoding folder is, usualy /bin /sbin are a must, /sbin is the same as /bin only this is supost to ahve restricted privaliges (so only user 0 or group 0 can use whatever is in here), so point being if you know what to tweek you can use a compltly difrent folder layout (if you wanted, i do like regualr liux folder system as it is cuse its not hard to guess what goes in what folder
Old 02-15-2004, 04:42 PM   #5
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Thanks Sci, I was taking the viewpoint of somebody who used to only use "Program Files" for the location of which to install programs, in other words my viewpoint!!

That's something I do like on Windows, the intuitive folders, well at least the top level folders...Security by obscurity comes to mind... Not bashing Linux though, I am sure the linux tree is just as intuitive to a life long linux user.
Old 08-12-2006, 01:21 PM   #6
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This is exactly the thing that is causing me so much grief. As a long-time Windows user when I want to install a new application I know exactly where I want to put it ... C:\Program Files\<application name>. With Linux however, even though I think I'm supposed to install applications in /usr/lib/<application name> there may be directories with the application name scattered all over the filesystem. A good example of this and the one that's been giving me the most grief lately is java (java, jre, jvm, ...). I have yet to get the latest JRE to work not to mention getting the plug-ins to work in Firefox even though I think I've followed the instructions I've found online. ... and let's be honest there's a lot of stuff on a basic Linux configuration that just doesn't work out of the box. I struggled with multimedia players and browser plug-in installation is an outright pain in the tush! On the other hand there are some application installations that just work slick 'n snot. I can't remember which ones off the top of my head - maybe because they were so trouble-free - LOL!

I've been to the links in this and similar threads and gotten no more than a general overview of the Linux filesystem. I would like to become as comfortable with the Linux filesystem and installing application in same as I am with Microsoft Windows. Can anyone out there turn me on to resources that will help me achieve that lofty goal?

Last edited by rgauthier; 08-12-2006 at 01:23 PM.
Old 08-13-2006, 04:50 AM   #7
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Use `man 7 hier`.


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