- [Where do you put local software?]
- First, realize that this is a topic to start religious wars about
- between sysadmins, similar to those fought over Emacs vs. vi and DOS
- vs. Unix vs. the Mac (vs. your favorite pet architecture).
Well, yes. But it is a real problem, and system managers tend to solve
it for their own convenience rather than the user's. First there were
commands in /bin, and manual pages for them in /man, then most of them
moved to /usr/...
Then we had and /usr/ucb and /usr/new and /usr/local (on Ultrix) and
Now you get with any self respecting application:
o man pages
o error message files
o resource files
o font files
o example files
o interactive help files
o startup and startup-default files
Come proper internationalisation (AIX makes already a good stab at it)
you need the man pages, messages, and examples in different languages,
and the resource files would benefit from internationalization too -
(remember, all user-visible text must be in the user's language)
You also may want different resource sets for various hardware setups,
so that when you design your perfect color scheme for one terminal you do
not get glorious black on black on a monochrome screen, or fleaprints as
characters when you come to a display with a higher pixel density.
From the administrators point of view it is neat to have all files
belonging to an application under one directory, from a users point of view
this is a pain, as every time a new application comes in all users have to
change their PATH, MANPATH etc. This is necessary because once the novelty
of an rarely used application has worn off, *nobody* knows any more what
has to be changed to use it.
I still remember being supinely told by a system administrator that
if I wanted to use jove, I'd better put /usr/local/jove/bin onto my PATH,
a directory containing two binaries (you guessed it, jove and teachjove)
and he wasn't having his system installation cluttered up with them.
Just to add to the flame-bait ... Thomas
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