Novice query: Installation Help

Ric Moore wayward4now at
Wed Oct 2 19:42:24 UTC 2013

On 10/02/2013 02:59 PM, James Freer wrote:
>> Others strongly feel that separate /home and / are desirable and that
>> is fine.  I stopped doing this a couple of years ago however and have
>> not regretted it.
>> Colin
> When I installed 12.04 on a new PC with a 500 gb disk - I decided for
> the first time to try a separate /home partition (no dual boot with
> windows or another linux distro). It seems to be a popular route. Yet
> what i have found is that it retains all the detritis for a new
> install i.e. all the .files for apps one has installed and then
> removed - which is what one doesn't want on a new install. Prior to
> 12.04 I was using a much older pc with a small disk so I just did the
> "use entire disk" install. "Use entire disk" not being the best choice
> with the modern much larger drives.
> I was thinking the best approach is to do an install to a 20-30 gb
> partition for the system and the rest as another parition just for
> data. BUT I haven't seen a post to suggest that this is a good idea?
> Then the .files are wiped which is what one wants.

Since he said he was a novice, I didn't go into the scheme I use. It 
hails from the old Caldera days when /opt was used to store data and 
applications that were not to be messed with during a system upgrade.

So, I have /opt mounted as a partition, along with / and swap. That's 
it. Then in my user directory I have links to all of the popular private 
directories like Video, Desktop, Downloads, Documents, Pictures linked 
to similar directory names in /opt. I also have .thunderbird and 
.mozilla linked to there.

When it comes time to do a fresh upgrade, which I do at least every 
other release and especially for LTS versions, I merely recreate my 
links, I have new config files for everything else plus I have a backup 
copy of /etc/X11/xorg.conf stored in /opt  and anything else I might 
need to restore AFTERWARDS. Like a backup file for synaptic to 
re-install my repos.

It does take a plan and it's a good way for a novice to learn what is 
user space that is worth keeping and what is worth allowing it to be 
overwritten during the upgrade. It's relatively painless.

As usual I'll forget something though! Food for thought. But myself I 
wouldn't re-use ALL old .config files willy-nilly. Stuff changes and it 
changes quickly. I wouldn't DREAM of just remounting /home. My two 
cents, Ric

My father, Victor Moore (Vic) used to say:
"There are two Great Sins in the world...
..the Sin of Ignorance, and the Sin of Stupidity.
Only the former may be overcome." R.I.P. Dad.
/ /

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