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I've recently installed Ubuntu Sever 12.04, and I've been having trouble with audio, and have been installing software to fix it.

However, after rebooting my computer in (a futile) attempt at getting volumeicon to work, I've found that my home directory has been populated with some directories that I am pretty sure I haven't created myself, and wasn't there when I freshly installed it. Namely, they are Desktop, Public, Videos, Documents, Music, Downloads, Pictures, and Templates.

How did these directories get there? Is it something I installed?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

Those are part of the desktop installation. The desktop home looks like this:

enter image description here

Old image from the web. The www and node directories are extra in the image

Some extra information that might help pin point where it came from. The directories created are probably from

cat /etc/xdg/user-dirs.defaults

# Default settings for user directories
# The values are relative pathnames from the home directory and
# will be translated on a per-path-element basis into the users locale
# Another alternative is:

More info on

Unless you actually installed gnome desktop on that server (but I bet you'd remember that) you might have touched a package with xdg in the name.

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I've ran dpkg -l | grep xdg and it lists xdg-user-dirs as one of the packages. Maybe this was it? At any rate, it looks like uninstalling them (even with --purge) doesn't clean up those directories. – math4tots Apr 20 '12 at 8:49
Nope it will not: removing them should be up to the user. You never know if there's a file in there that needs saving (better safe then sorry ;) ) – Rinzwind Apr 20 '12 at 9:22

These are always present in any Ubuntu installation. Nothing to worry about.

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Are these folders actually directly in the /home directory? or in /home/"Username" directory? If they're under your /home/"Username" directory these are default folders that are installed with every distro.

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He is talking about the server version and I too believe those directories are not part of a default server installation. At least, as a admin I believe, they should not be part of it ;) – Rinzwind Apr 20 '12 at 8:31
They're under /home/"Username", however, they weren't there when I first installed 12.04. And as Rinzwind pointed out, it would be rather silly to include those directories on a server installation. – math4tots Apr 20 '12 at 8:36

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