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Old 02-27-2013, 03:30 PM   #1
doug skillmore
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SUPER newbie question rel/abs path?


hi all, brand new here and to linux, please be nice!

can someone explain the difference between a relative and absolute path?

please?

i am sorry
 
Old 02-27-2013, 03:37 PM   #2
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Doug:
No need to be 'sorry', at least you're 1 up on some other folks who don't know that they don't know.

A relative path is more relational to the directory you are "in", for example:
if you are in /home/doug (your $HOME directory) a relative path to Documents could be ~/Documents, or $HOME/Documents.
Both of those are relative paths, they "relate" to your /home/doug directory.

an absolute path is /home/doug/Documents

Check out http://rute.2038bug.com/node7.html.g...00000000000000
 
Old 02-27-2013, 04:09 PM   #3
doug skillmore
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ok sweet.


i like your explantion, it works for me. thank you very much!
 
Old 02-27-2013, 04:10 PM   #4
suicidaleggroll
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A relative path would be like telling somebody "turn left on Spruce street, right on Walnut Ln, and stop at the 3rd house on your left", while an absolute path would be to tell somebody "go to 1234 Walnut Ln".

Absolute paths can be run from anywhere in the system, they point to a definite place. /home/user is always going to be /home/user no matter where you run that command from.

Relative paths are movements relative to your current location. ../dir1 means "go up one directory, and then into dir1". If your terminal is sitting in /home/user/docs, "../dir1" is going to point to a very different location than if you're sitting in /usr/local/include (the former would point to /home/user/dir1, the latter to /usr/local/dir1).
 
Old 02-27-2013, 04:25 PM   #5
johnsfine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Habitual View Post
A relative path is more relational to the directory you are "in"
Yes.

Quote:
for example:
if you are in /home/doug (your $HOME directory) a relative path to Documents could be ~/Documents, or $HOME/Documents.
Both of those are relative paths, they "relate" to your /home/doug directory.
Wrong!

~/Documents or $HOME/Documents are still absolute paths.

Documents or ./Documents are relative paths.
 
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Old 02-27-2013, 04:30 PM   #6
johnsfine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suicidaleggroll View Post
A relative path would be like telling somebody "turn left on Spruce street, right on Walnut Ln, and stop at the 3rd house on your left", while an absolute path would be to tell somebody "go to 1234 Walnut Ln".
Misleading analogy.

Your relative path example is great, but for absolute path:
"START out going north on Elm St in Springfield, Iowa (USA) and THEN turn left on Spruce street, right on Walnut Ln, and stop at the 3rd house on your left".

The real difference between absolute and relative is that absolute tells you where to START (but may then give relative directions) while relative assumes the person giving the directions and the person getting the directions both already know the starting point.

BTW, I've never been to Iowa so there is chance the directions I just gave you are wrong.

Last edited by johnsfine; 02-27-2013 at 04:36 PM.
 
Old 02-27-2013, 04:50 PM   #7
suicidaleggroll
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsfine View Post
The real difference between absolute and relative is that absolute tells you where to START (but may then give relative directions) while relative assumes the person giving the directions and the person getting the directions both already know the starting point.
That is true, good catch
 
Old 02-28-2013, 07:26 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsfine View Post
Wrong!
Wouldn't be the first time, I Installed Windows and Ubuntu "once".
 
  


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