[RFC] /var versus /srv

Lamont Peterson lamont at gurulabs.com
Fri Sep 21 19:49:40 UTC 2007

Hash: SHA1

On Fri, 21 Sep 2007 14:58:42 -0400
Matthew Miller <mattdm at mattdm.org> wrote:

> On Fri, Sep 21, 2007 at 11:14:13AM -0700, Ian Burrell wrote:
> > /var isn't just for temporary files.  It is all local writable data.
> /var/home, eh?
> > Some of it is temporary and doesn't need to be backed up.  Some it
> > is your most critical data and better be backed up.
> And there's the problem. That's a huge flaw.
> Worse, some of it is very space-consuming temporary data which should
> never be backed up.

Not that I'm anyone of note, but I do teach Linux to lots of people every year.  Most are from medium to gargantuan companies (including most of the Global 200/Fortune 500/some-other-third-self-important-category).  I would say that at least 50% of my students (and their organizations) move things to /srv/ for the very reason of separating the "important to back up and keep" stuff from the "transitory, if we lose this its OK" parts.

I put things like web, FTP, named and database under /srv/ and it does make life easier on a day-to-day basis.  Some people might not think it would be easier for them.  That's fine, let them use whatever other location they want.  Seth was right though that many people create something even if they don't call it/use /srv/ as the path.

Personally, I would like to see things like web, FTP, email, database, etc. that use /var/ currently be split out into /srv/.  I understand that the FHS makes things confusing about some items.  Either way, we defiantly don't want to get rid of something like /srv/ (even empty) that so many people find so useful.  Sure, I can recreate the directory, but it's better to have a standard location so that we don't have everyone doing their own thing outside what the distribution provides in the first place.

I might even go so far as to suggest that Fedora "officially" state that the /srv/ directory is meant for stuff you care about (please, don't ask me right now for final verbage).
- -- 
Lamont Peterson <lamont at gurulabs.com>
Senior Instructor
Guru Labs, L.C. [ http://www.GuruLabs.com/ ]

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