Chapter 1. Introduction

Table of Contents

1.1. Purpose
1.2. Conventions

1.1. Purpose

This standard enables:

  • Software to predict the location of installed files and directories, and

  • Users to predict the location of installed files and directories.

We do this by:

  • Specifying guiding principles for each area of the filesystem,

  • Specifying the minimum files and directories required,

  • Enumerating exceptions to the principles, and

  • Enumerating specific cases where there has been historical conflict.

The FHS document is used by:

  • Independent software suppliers to create applications which are FHS compliant, and work with distributions which are FHS compliant,

  • OS creators to provide systems which are FHS compliant, and

  • Users to understand and maintain the FHS compliance of a system.

The FHS document has a limited scope:

  • Local placement of local files is a local issue, so FHS does not attempt to usurp system administrators.

  • FHS addresses issues where file placements need to be coordinated between multiple parties such as local sites, distributions, applications, documentation, etc.