5.14. /var/spool : Application spool data

5.14.1. Purpose

/var/spool contains data which is awaiting some kind of later processing. Data in /var/spool represents work to be done in the future (by a program, user, or administrator); often data is deleted after it has been processed. [46]

5.14.2. Specific Options

The following directories, or symbolic links to directories, must be in /var/spool, if the corresponding subsystem is installed:

lpdPrinter spool directory (optional)
mqueueOutgoing mail queue (optional)
newsNews spool directory (optional)
rwhoRwhod files (optional)
uucpSpool directory for UUCP (optional)

5.14.3. /var/spool/lpd : Line-printer daemon print queues (optional) Purpose

The lock file for lpd, lpd.lock, must be placed in /var/spool/lpd. It is suggested that the lock file for each printer be placed in the spool directory for that specific printer and named lock. Specific Options

printerSpools for a specific printer (optional)

5.14.4. /var/spool/rwho : Rwhod files (optional) Purpose

This directory holds the rwhod information for other systems on the local net.


Some BSD releases use /var/rwho for this data; given its historical location in /var/spool on other systems and its approximate fit to the definition of `spooled' data, this location was deemed more appropriate.

[46] UUCP lock files must be placed in /var/lock. See the above section on /var/lock.