Installing programs - location

Nils Kassube kassube at
Mon Apr 14 05:11:40 UTC 2008

Michael wrote:
> On a Microsoft system, programs are typically installed in the
> C:\Program Files directory.  I know that Linux has some specific
> directories as well.  My question is what directory is used when
> installing a program in Linux manually.   For example, a program that
> is not installed using apt-get or one of the other package managers. 
> Is it opt?

As it has been mentioned already, /opt and /usr/local are the locations 
for system wide installations. However keep in mind, that for Linux there 
are no single directories containing _all_ parts of an installed program. 
See <> for more 
details. For a system wide installation I would prefer /usr/local because 
then the binaries will be in /usr/local/bin. That directory is included 
in your $PATH and you don't need to enter the complete path to the binary 
file when you start it from the command line.

As another option users can install programs in their $HOME directories, 
but then they are only available for that particular user.


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