Programs installing to /

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Programs installing to /

Postby Stratacast1 on Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:20 pm

I'm trying to install some programs I want, but my issue is anything I install, whether through terminal or Software Manager, wants to install to my /root partition of 20GB. I set aside a 400GB /home partition but it will not install anything to it, which is what I wanted to have done in the first place. Is there a setting I have to change?

*EDIT* Changed title because it was confusing to some people
Last edited by Stratacast1 on Wed Nov 06, 2013 2:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby WharfRat on Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:34 pm

Stratacast1 wrote:I'm trying to install some programs I want, but my issue is anything I install, whether through terminal or Software Manager, wants to install to my /root partition of 20GB. I set aside a 400GB /home partition but it will not install anything to it, which is what I wanted to have done in the first place. Is there a setting I have to change?

You cannot change the location of where package files reside. They are installed to the appropriate folders adhering to certain rules.

For example, open a terminal and enter
Code: Select all
dpkg -L firefox

and you will see where the individual files were placed.

Good luck :wink:
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby Stratacast1 on Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:38 pm

WharfRat wrote:
Stratacast1 wrote:I'm trying to install some programs I want, but my issue is anything I install, whether through terminal or Software Manager, wants to install to my /root partition of 20GB. I set aside a 400GB /home partition but it will not install anything to it, which is what I wanted to have done in the first place. Is there a setting I have to change?

You cannot change the location of where package files reside. They are installed to the appropriate folders adhering to certain rules.

For example, open a terminal and enter
Code: Select all
dpkg -L firefox

and you will see where the individual files were placed.

Good luck :wink:

But how do I get all this from not installing to my root then? If I have everything installing into the root, then I won't even be able to install 1/4 of what I want...also when I have to upgrade it'll wipe everything I did install.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby tadaensylvermane on Sun Nov 03, 2013 8:47 pm

But how do I get all this from not installing to my root then? If I have everything installing into the root, then I won't even be able to install 1/4 of what I want...also when I have to upgrade it'll wipe everything I did install
.

You don't really but you don't need to. True you will have to download again. But one thing I love about linux is it is nearly exponentially easier on hard drive space. I have a virtual machine setup right now. In windows with what I need I'm sitting at 53gb disk usage, another 15gb in media on top of that. In my debian virtual machine root is only sitting at 5 1/2 gb. That is with the same "functionally" programs on each. Can do same task on whatever I feel at the moment. 53gb vs 5 1/2gb. Same selection of software. Not even close. 20gb should be more than enough. If you are worried about steam games I believe they do install to home.

Another example, again with debian. I have terrible internet. I can do a clean install + full updates + all software I need in 2 1/2 hours or so. Windows same thing takes me nearly a full day. Almost all download time. An idea of the difference in amount of stuff on each one. If I had to guess this is all due to shared libraries.

To be safe maybe re-install and make the root a bit bigger? But the average user won't even come close to topping out a 20gb root I would guess.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby passerby on Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:06 pm

The installation itself may want to be on the root partition (/, not /root, unless you're logged in as root for whatever reason), but the majority of the space taken will be in /home.
Unless you start to run out of space (unlikely, since a 10GB / partition is usually more than enough), I wouldn't worry about it.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby Stratacast1 on Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:22 pm

passerby wrote:The installation itself may want to be on the root partition (/, not /root, unless you're logged in as root for whatever reason), but the majority of the space taken will be in /home.
Unless you start to run out of space (unlikely, since a 10GB / partition is usually more than enough), I wouldn't worry about it.


I just typed /root because I figured it might be easier to read...but I'll just write it as / from now on. I'm not logged into root. My reason for concern is because I watched one of my installs, a 1GB file, and the whole 1GB went to /. I don't see one bit of data going to my /home partition.

Now what I'm becoming concerned about is if parts of my software gets stored into /, then that means when I have to clean install for the next version of Mint, I'll have to go back and take the time to reinstall every single program I had in the previous version. I don't see how that's any good in any way. I wouldn't mind stretching my / partition a huge amount if I knew I wouldn't have to wipe all of my stuff each upgrade.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby passerby on Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:44 pm

Must've been a pretty big program. If you want to reclaim space like that, you could move the files somewhere in /home and use a symlink.
Hell, if you really want to, you could move and symlink the directories that usually take most of the install files (/usr/lib, /usr/share, etc.)

If you really want to keep program files across installs, check whether the package in question is available for direct download as a portable program.
eg. With eclipse, you can download the program and extract it somewhere convenient in your home directory, then run it from there. Saves a few hundred MBs of downloads and install space.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby Stratacast1 on Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:14 pm

passerby wrote:Must've been a pretty big program. If you want to reclaim space like that, you could move the files somewhere in /home and use a symlink.
Hell, if you really want to, you could move and symlink the directories that usually take most of the install files (/usr/lib, /usr/share, etc.)

If you really want to keep program files across installs, check whether the package in question is available for direct download as a portable program.
eg. With eclipse, you can download the program and extract it somewhere convenient in your home directory, then run it from there. Saves a few hundred MBs of downloads and install space.


I've read that symlinks can get kind of messy? I do a lot of my work stuff on Linux now and I plan to install the games I can too which Many games can range from 10-20GB. So...that's root right there haha. I did some more research and saw that the mint backup will backup files and software to an external HDD. So...my thought is to leave my OS clean right now and not install all the programs I want right now until Linux Mint 16 is available. With that I could back up my software installed and files, wipe the hard drive completely, do like a 250GB root, 200GB /home, and a 2GB swap and leave the extra space open for whatever. Does that sound okay?
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby administrollaattori on Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:36 pm

Stratacast1 wrote: do like a 250GB root, 200GB /home, and a 2GB swap and leave the extra space open for whatever. Does that sound okay?

Far too big root partition - 20 GB is enough for /

If you want to install some large games, the right directory could be /opt, which can be on a different partition.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby passerby on Tue Nov 05, 2013 9:40 pm

Depends on the games you're playing too. Steam games, for example, install to their own directory in steam's folder in /home.
Either way, 250GB is way too much. Stick with 10-20GB, and if you ever get close to maxing out, look at which directory is taking up all of the space and go from there.
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Re: Programs installing to /root

Postby Stratacast1 on Wed Nov 06, 2013 2:54 am

administrollaattori wrote:
Stratacast1 wrote: do like a 250GB root, 200GB /home, and a 2GB swap and leave the extra space open for whatever. Does that sound okay?

Far too big root partition - 20 GB is enough for /

If you want to install some large games, the right directory could be /opt, which can be on a different partition.


Is there a way that I can see where these programs are being installed to? I know for example Nexuiz installed straight to my /
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Re: Programs installing to /

Postby js3915 on Wed Nov 06, 2013 11:04 am

Long as things follow the typical FHS https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filesystem_Hierarchy_Standard
Most programs will fall into /usr or /opt

You could in theory keep / under 10GB 5GB might be plenty 20-30GB for /usr 500mb-1GB for swap then rest for home
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Re: Programs installing to /

Postby gold_finger on Wed Nov 06, 2013 11:48 am

Since you're going to move on to Mint 16 or 17 soon anyway, maybe you should install the programs in Mint 15 (if that's what you're using) that you are worried so much about fitting and SEE NOW what is going to happen. Under most circumstances 20GB is way more than enough for /. If you do that, you'll have a better idea of what you'll need for / in 16 or 17 when you set them up -- rather than everybody guessing.
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Re: Programs installing to /

Postby js3915 on Wed Nov 06, 2013 10:32 pm

I looked at my Disk Usage Analyzer tool tonite when i got home my setup with / /usr /home seems root is about 1.2GB but is a fresh install. If you dont seperate out /usr that might be only time you might want / tobe about 20-30 gb. My /usr is currently 3gb though depends how many programs you install.. i cant see it growing more than 10-20GB unless you install everything under the sun... Alot will go into your home folder so should be largest plus if you ever want to migrate change distros etc just keep /home unformatted and will be good to go
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