Linux File System Hierarchy
If you look at the Linux file hierarchy, you find the following :
/bin- Common binaries
/sbin- Binaries used for system administration are placed here.
/boot- Static files of the boot loader. Usually it contain the Linux kernel, Grub boot loader files and so on.
/dev- Device files such as your CD drive, hard disk, and any other physical device.
In Linux/Unix, the common premise is that everything is a file.
/home- User HOME directories are found here. In unices like FreeBSD, the HOME directories are found in /usr/home. And in Solaris it is in /export. So quite a big difference here.
/lib- Essential shared libraries and kernel modules.
/mnt- Temporary mount point useful for when you insert your USB stick and it gets mounted under /mnt. Though in Ubuntu and the likes, it is usually mounted under /media.
/var- Variable data, such as logs, news, mail spool files and so on which is constantly being modified by various programs running on your system.
/tmp- Temporary files are placed here by default.
/usr- The secondary hierarchy which contain its own bin and sbin sub-directories.
/etc- Usually contain the configuration files for all the programs that run on your Linux/Unix system.
/opt- Third party application packages which does not conform to the standard Linux file hierarchy can be installed here.
/srv- Contains data for services provided by the system.
And of course there is the
/procdirectory which does not actually reside on the disk.
The file system hierarchy standard [FSHS] explains
/etcas follows :
The /etc hierarchy contains conﬁguration ﬁles. A "conﬁguration ﬁle" is a local ﬁle used to control the operation of a program; it must be static and cannot be an executable binary.
It further goes on to say :
No binaries may be located under '/etc'. And the following directories, or symbolic links to directories are required in /etc:
- opt Conﬁguration for /opt
- X11 Conﬁguration for the X Window system (optional)
- sgml Conﬁguration for SGML (optional)
- xml Conﬁguration for XML (optional)
While this is the long and short of the matter, some believe that '/etc' is indeed an acronym and stands for "Editable Text Configuration". Oh well, the media is still not out with the verdict.