Linux Filesystem Hierarchy
November 7, 2020 Linux 2 minutes, 21 seconds
/ ├── bin ├── boot ├── dev ├── etc ├── home ├── initrd ├── lib ├── lib64 ├── media ├── mnt ├── opt ├── proc ├── root ├── run ├── sbin ├── srv ├── usr │ ├── bin │ ├── include │ ├── lib │ ├── lib64 │ ├── local │ ├── sbin │ ├── share │ ├── src └── var └── tmp
- bin → useful commands that are of use to both the system administrator as well as on-privileged users, e.g. cat, chmod, cp, echo, pwd, rm, sed, ...
- boot → everything required for the boot process except for configuration files not needed at boot time
- dev → special or device files. Hard drives and DVD drives are block devices. Serial ports, parallel ports are character devices.
- etc → all system related configuration files defined as local files used to control the operation of a program which must be static and cannot be an executable binary.
- home → each user is also assigned a specific directory that is accessible only to them and the system administrator which are subdirectories of /home
- initrd → capability to load a RAM disk by the boot loader
- lib and lib64 → kernel modules and those shared library images needed to boot the system and run the commands in the root filesystem like /bin and /sbin
- media → containing mount points for removable media
- mnt → generic mount point for filesystems or devices
- opt → reserved for all the software and add-on packages that are not part of the default installation
- proc → virtual filesystem. Sometimes referred to as a process information pseudo-file system. Contains runtime system information (e.g. system memory, devices mounted, hardware configuration, etc). Can be regarded as a control and information centre for the kernel.
- root → Home directory of the root account
- run → Similar to /var/run but tools like systemd or udev require this location early in the boot process where /var is not mounted
- sbin → only binaries essential for booting, restoring, recovering, and/or repairing the system in addition to the binaries in /bin, e.g. fdisk, init, route, swapof,
- srv → site-specific data which is served by this system.
- usr ("user system resources") → user-land programs and data (as opposed to 'system land' programs and data)
- bin → vast majority of binaries
- include → 'header files', needed for compiling user space source code.
- lib → program libraries.
- local → self-compiled or third-party programs safe from being overwritten by system updates
- sbin → programs for administering a system, meant to be run by 'root', e.g. chroot, useradd
- share → 'shareable', architecture-independent files (man pages, icons, fonts etc)
- src → the Linux kernel sources, header-files and documentation.
- var → variable data like system logging files, mail and printer spools, and temporary files.
- tmp → files that are required temporarily