The Blood flow of linux: Linux Filesystem

Ok linux enthusiasts, if you are like me, you want to learn all you can about linux. Not just how to use it on your system to get things done, but to learn how it works so you can gain the skills necessary to build that ultimate Frankenstein. Don’t forget to see the movie, iFrankenstein.

First you need to know how the bones are structured and what makes the blood flow. The bones will be referred to as the kernel. Depending on what kernel version you use determines what hardware will work. For blood flow, you need to be familiar with the filesystem and what is contained in it as well as how it all works to complement each other. Lets start with the filesystem.

All files and drivers are stored on your hard drive, in a directory known as the root, “/”. This folder hierarchy holds all files and programs that make your linux system operate. At the beginning is the root folder “/”. Everything needed for a functioning system is stored there, boot files, bash programs, device files, drivers, system information. You don’t have this directory, you don’t have a working system. 

Next is the /bin which are essential commands that everyone needs to use at any time. These commands are needed for all linux systems. They can be used with or without a GUI. These commands are vital.

/boot: The information that boots the machine, including your kernel. Here is where the kernel lives as well as the list of other OSes that reside on your system. When you run the “update-grub” command, the program checks all the OSes stored in that folder.

/dev: The device drivers for all the hardware that your system needs to interface with. All your devices on your system are stored as files in this directory. If your system detects hardware, this is where you will find them.

/etc: the configuration folder for your system. This is where system admins live their lives. If you want to change how your system behaves, boots, you make the changes here.

/home: the home directories for each of your users. This is self explanatory. This is where your profile lives.

/lib: the libraries, or the code that many programs (and the kernel) use. All programs need code to perform tasks. The more code, the more tasks accomplished. If a program needs additional code to perform a request, it will likely look here.

/media: a spot where you add temporary media, such as the floppy disks and CD-ROMs; not all distributions have this directory.


/mnt: a spot where you add extra filesystem components such as networked drives and items you aren’t permanently adding to your filesystem but that aren’t temporary as CD-ROMs and floppies. Mostly this is where other hard drives and network folders will be placed.

/opt: the location that some people decide to use (and some programs want to use) for installing new software packages, such as word processors and office suites.

/proc: current settings for your kernel (operating system). The files in the /proc provide views into the running kernel and have special properties. They always appear to be zero sized, read-only, and dated “now”.

/root: the superuser’s (root user’s) home directory. When you run sudo, you tell that system to use the “/root” folder as the user profile to grant you permissions to perform system changes.

/sbin: the commands the system administrator needs access to.

/srv: data for your system’s services (the programs that run in the background).

/sys: kernel information about your hardware. The kernel keeps a listing of hardware on the system as to access it more quickly and make changes is necessary. 

/tmp: the place where everyone and everything stores temporary files.

/usr: a complex hierarchy of additional programs and files. When you install programs from your distro’s repos, they get stored here. 

/var: the data that changes frequently, such as log files and your mail. Go here to check system logs if your system encounters an error.

This is where we will began. I like this organization of system files because you know where things are where to access them. Plus, it makes accessing very easy and quick. Get into the heart of your machine and build that ultimate monster. 



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