I have been working with a team who used to install all the application and HTTP services like Apache or Tomcat to the '/srv' directory. I suspect mostly in order to keep the installed services separated from the OS as much as possible. For my own projects I kept this practice. However, over time it more and more looked like this might not be a very good idea: It prevents you from using distribution specific packages (they had a very bad reputation in that team, so mostly everything was custom installations), and I noticed that I was getting into quite some trouble when trying to use chef cookbooks, that are already available.
So lately I was tempted to switch to using the distribution specific packages instead of trying to build custom installations which fit into that directory structure. I was wondering if there is anything that I might be overlooking. Is there actually any good reason to put everything into a '/srv' directory or any good reason to not use the distribution specific packages?