NonStandard Directory Tree, Wildcards in PATH, etc

Jeremy Henty jeremy at
Sat Aug 7 03:06:28 PDT 2004

Dominic, check out Gobo Linux <URL:">.  They
have already done the sort of thing you are suggesting.

Dominic L Hilsbos wrote:

> Put all system files under /Linux/, 

I'd prefer "/linux/".  Real hackers spurn caps!  Actual, real hackers
spurn vowels too[1], so it should really be "/lnx".  :-) Joking aside,
putting the OS in a non-root directory is a good idea.  Windows got
this right.

> Put all non-system programs in their own folder under /Programs/ 

Aren't we already going that way with "/opt"?

> The thing is, I'd prefere to keep program specific libraries in a
> subdirectory of the programs directory (i.e. /Programs/*/lib/) how
> would I setup ln to access these libraries, yet not compromise
> seurity?
> Also how would I setup the path to allow ussers to use the programs
> in /Programs/*/?

The proper way IMHO to do this is for all utilities that use search
paths (shells etc.) to interpret path values like
"/usr/bin:/opt/*/bin:${HOME}/mystuff/**/bin" (or some similar syntax)
to mean "look in /usr/bin , all directories called bin in an immediate
subdirectory of /opt , and all directories called bin anywhere in the
directory tree rooted at mystuff in my home directory".  Security
would then work the way it already does: sensitive accounts would
exclude insecure directories from their paths, and really paranoid
programs would ignore the environment's paths altogether and use a
hard-wired path.


Jeremy Henty 

[1] Except for the bizarre exception of "umount", where they kept all
the vowels and deleted a consonant instead.  Sigh!  I guess they
didn't want the consonants to get complacent and think they were safe.

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