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Linux Newbie Administrator Guide - 4.1 Basics

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operating system.
/usr/local/bin--perhaps smaller "user"-installed executables, plus symbolic links to the larger executables contained in separate subdirectories under /usr/local.

It is important to understand that all directories appear in a single directory tree, even if the directories are contained on different partitions, physical drives (including floppies, etc), or even if they are distributed over the network.

Therefore, there are no DOS-type "drive letters" under Linux. What would be a "drive" under DOS or MS Windows, appears on Linux as a subdirectory in a special "mounting" location.

The directory system is well-established and standard on most Linux distributions (the small differences are being currently addressed by the Linux Standard Base). It is also quite similar to that found on typical commercial UNIX systems.

To summarize:
  • Users always save their files to the directory /home/user_login_name (and its subdirctories)
  • The local administrator most likely installs the "additional" software under the directory /usr/local and makes a link to the main executable in /usr/local/bin.
  • System settings are all in the directory /etc.
  • It is not a good idea to temper with the content of the root directory ("/") or of the directory /usr, unless I really know what I want. These directories are best left as they came with my Linux distribution.
  • Most tools and applications installed on my system are in the directories: /bin, /sbin, /usr/bin, /sbin, /usr/X11/bin, /usr/local/bin.
  • All the files are in single directory tree. There are no drive letters.

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