There are numerous scripts that I have written for my server. Some of them are in my ~/scripts and some of them are in application directories.

I am just wondering is there a directory that you would normally use to keep your shell scripts?


Personal ones for my account, ~/bin. System-wide ones go in /usr/local/bin or /usr/local/sbin as appropriate (scripts which should only be run as root go in sbin, while scripts intended to help ordinary users go in bin), rolled out via configuration management to ensure that all machines that need them have them (and the latest versions, too).

  • 1
    +1 This is exactly what I do. Jul 22 '09 at 9:10
  • 4
    You should explain the appropriateness of bin versus sbin :)
    – Dan Carley
    Jul 22 '09 at 10:02
  • 3
    sbin is meant for "Superuser BINaries", programs that usually need root access to run properly. "bin" is for all the rest.
    – wazoox
    Jul 22 '09 at 10:11
  • 14
    The origin of sbin came from "Statically-linked BINaries". When /usr (and its shared libraries) were mounted outside of single-user mode, it was found necessary to keep around some statically linked programs (sh, tar) that always worked. Since only the SysAdmin was interested in these binaries, the misnomer began.
    – kmarsh
    Jul 22 '09 at 12:21
  • 1
    If you're managing to write architecture-specific shell scripts, I weep for whoever else has to maintain your code.
    – womble
    Jul 23 '09 at 3:25

For more complex stuff, especially something that could be shared between multiple machines I tend to make distribution packages, Debian in my case. I use /usr/bin, and give scripts some common prefix. That way it's easier to deploy and keep track of them. For my personal stuff, ~/bin is good enough.

  • Is there a good guide somewhere for packaging (for Debian) simple scripts?
    – Insyte
    Jul 22 '09 at 14:20

At the moment I use ~/bin for my personal (quick and dirty :P) scripts and /usr/local/bin (or sbin) for system wide ones

Both directories are under revision control via git.

  • i do the same, except s/git/svn/
    – cas
    Jul 22 '09 at 22:11

I currently use /usr/local/$company/scripts for system-wide scripts, and ~/bin for personal. I also have a ~/code folder that contains work-in-progress stuff.


I use ~/.bin
The folder is hidden for file managers and ls: i rarely modify anything inside, so let it be :)

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