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Old 11-17-2008, 06:09 PM   #1
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/bin, /sbin, /usr/bin, /usr/sbin - why are there 4?

I don't understand the difference between /bin, /sbin, /usr/bin, and /usr/sbin. Why do we need 4 different locations for binary files? I assume there's some difference?
Old 11-17-2008, 06:29 PM   #2
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man hier
       /bin   This directory contains executable programs which are needed  in
              single user mode and to bring the system up or repair it.

       /sbin  Like /bin, this directory holds commands needed to boot the sys-
              tem, but which are usually not executed by normal users.

              This  is  the  primary  directory for executable programs.  Most
              programs executed by normal users which are not needed for boot-
              ing  or  for  repairing  the  system and which are not installed
              locally should be placed in this directory.

              This  directory contains program binaries for system administra-
              tion which are not essential for the boot process, for  mounting
              /usr, or for system repair.
Old 11-17-2008, 07:23 PM   #3
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And, to avoid a possible confusion, I believe that the "usr" is short for "Unix System Resources," not "user." So, while both /bin and /usr/bin are in user's $PATH, they do not, normally, have "write" access to those resource directories.
Old 11-18-2008, 09:59 PM   #4
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Take a look at the FHS and hopefully that'll help answer your questions.


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