Linked by David Adams on Mon 24th Aug 2009 09:21 UTC
Linux A reader asks: Why is Linux still not as user friendly as the two other main OSes with all the people developing for Linux? Is it because it is mainly developed by geeks? My initial feeling when reading this question was that it was kind of a throwaway, kind of a slam in disguise as a genuine question. But the more I thought about it, the more intrigued I felt. There truly are a large amount of resources being dedicated to the development of Linux and its operating system halo (DEs, drivers, apps, etc). Some of these resources are from large companies (IBM, Red Hat, Novell). Why isn't Linux more user-friendly? Is this an inherent limitation with open source software?
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Most of the programs install the executables under program files so yes it does make more sense.

Is that all you wanted?

Under Linux your executables are installed under /usr/

In some rare cases they may be under /opt/, but I am personally against this and as far as I can see it is not used much any more. (Just like on windows you rarely see C:\APPNAME\ any more).

If you want to be specific, 99% of executables are installed in /usr/bin/. In some cases it's /usr/local/bin/, as in FreeBSD for example, but this is mostly a per distribution differentiation.

Your problem is probably that you don't like seeing ten different directories in /, or maybe you don't like your files being in /usr/*/package/ instead of /programfiles/package/. Please understand that this is your problem, not a design flaw.

Would it make you happier if I moved /tmp/ to under /var/ and put /boot/ /dev/ /proc/ /sys/ /lib/ /bin/ and /sbin/ under /linux/? And renamed /usr/ to /programfiles/ and /etc/ to /settings/ and /home/ to /users/? Would it? Because now we're talking semantics not function.

How about this. If you can convince Microsoft to stop using slashes going the wrong direction and also to stop using 'drive letters', instead placing things in lettered directories in / (e.g. /c/windows/), then I will consider changing the way Linux lays things out just to make you more comfortable, too. Do we have a deal?

Edited 2009-08-24 17:35 UTC

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