Dan Widyono on 13 Apr 2005 02:48:29 -0000

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Re: [PLUG] linux best practices

> 1) is there a standard location for installing applications?

Yes, there are.  :)

/usr/local		is an old favorite
/opt			is a current favorite
/pkg			(or other spelling) is seen in some local setups
/usr, /etc, /lib        is for apps trying to follow red hat's setup
				(among other distros)

Within /usr/local or /opt are typically:

bin	user binaries
include development files
info	docs in info format
lib	auxiliary files
libexec binary auxiliary files, arch dependent
man	docs in *roff format
sbin	system binaries
share	cross-platform/architecture files

Other options: /opt/pkg/<appname> or even /opt/<appname>.  Currently I'm
seeing more of /opt/<appname>/<version>.  This makes a lot of sense for
larger apps.  Within <appname> would be the entire directory tree just for
that application.

The package designer might be going for ease of installation and removal
(cleaner namespaces with separate directory tree for each application), or
for "correct" integration with a distribution (e.g. RPMs in red hat), or for
functional separation (e.g. bin/ directory with all binaries from all apps).

So, there really are several best practices.  FWIW the Linux File Hierarchy
Standard says /opt is for "add-on application software packages".

> 2) what do you typically backup?
>     /home    /etc     ???

Everything.  Why not?  Disaster recovery is made easier if you don't skip
anything.  Now *archives*, that might be different depending on your needs.
I still archive everything, but I'm a sysadmin by trade.

Dan W.

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