This article is more dedicated to new users of GNU / Linux, which was published by me some time ago in a project that we will resume shortly, called Cepero Project.
I was a Windows user for more than 8 years, and if there was something that really bothered me, it was having to organize and configure all the folders and programs with which I worked daily after each new installation of the operating system.
One of the first things that caught my eye about GNU / Linux, was the fact that after formatting the root partition (which in Windows would be disk C :), my folders remained in the same place and together with them, everything else: the same icons, the same pointer, the same wallpaper and even the same settings of my programs of daily use such as the mail client or the browser . How was this possible? Well the answer is very simple.
This is because the distributions of GNU / Linux, user settings (Unless you specify otherwise by means of a symbolic link or some other trick) are saved by default in the folder / home / user / which is the partition intended to store user data, something like the counterpart of disk D :.
These settings are saved in hidden folders, (folders containing a period in front of the name)* and for them to be restored again we only have to meet two requirements when formatting:
- Do not format the partition /home.
- Return to put the same username so that the system set the same / home partition.
In this way, when the session starts and we log in with our regular user, everything remains in its place.
Important: If you have selected the option to request password to decrypt your personal folder (this option is set during installation) must put the same password that you had previously, otherwise you will not have permissions on your own / Home regardless of whether the user is the same.
Knowing a little more.
En GNU / Linux we can find shared or individual user configurations. The individual ones are those that are saved in the / Home of the user inside the hidden folders as explained above, and the shared ones are the ones that are saved (as root) in the folder / Usr / share /.
Within / Usr / share / There are two folders that can be interesting for users: icons y themes. In the first, the icons and cursors are saved, and in the second, the themes Gtk y Metacity, of which we will speak later.
If we create these same folders within the / Home of the user and add a point in front (.icons, .themes) to hide them, once the system starts, it will also take them into account to establish our configurations.
So, if we want to have an icon pack, a Gtk pack, or a theme for the cursor, different from those that other users can choose, we put them inside these folders in our / Home.
Explaining all this theory in a few words:
If we put our icons, themes and fonts inside the folders .icons, .themes o .fonts our / Home, only we will have access to them, if we put them inside the same folders but in /usr/share, all system users will have access to them.
Important: It is always recommended, especially if we do it manually, copy the icons and themes within our / Home, since usually the folder /usr/share It is erased when we format our system.
Typically desktop environments like Gnome o KDE They do this work for us, copying each thing in its corresponding folder using an application dedicated to desktop customization, but this is good to know for other work environments such as Xfce, or if we use a window manager like Openbox o Fluxbox.
Now every time we reinstall, we will have everything in place ...