I want to install the latest Eclipse Kepler Java EE manually. So far so good.

My questions:

  1. there are obviously 2 possible install directories for the extracted eclipse folder:

/opt or /usr/local what is the recommended one?

  1. The same but for creating a symbolic link: two possibilities to

/usr/bin or /usr/local/bin

same here what is the recommended directory?

My best bet: install directory /opt/eclipse and symbolic link to /usr/bin?

  • 1
    if you manually donwloaded the eclipse bundle, it's a complete software and only requires java to be installed on your system so just unpack it to your say home directory and double click on the eclipse script to launch it. You can later make a link for it with a right click on the script
    – Zuko
    Feb 15 '14 at 21:31

According to the Unix Filesystem Hierarchy Standard, /opt and /usr/local are to be used as follows:


"The /usr/local hierarchy is for use by the system administrator when installing software locally. [...] It may be used for programs and data that are shareable amongst a group of hosts, but not found in /usr."


"/opt is reserved for the installation of add-on application software packages. [...] Programs to be invoked by users must be located in the directory /opt/<package>/bin or under the /opt/<provider> hierarchy."

So to answer your two questions:

"/opt or /usr/local what is the recommended one?"

Borrowing from this answer (which goes into more detail than I ever could), /opt is intended for prebuilt packages containing prebuilt binaries that are ready for unpacking. If you are compiling Eclipse yourself, /usr/local would be the correct place.

"/usr/bin or /usr/local/bin?"

/usr/bin is intended for software provided by your distribution. If you are building Eclipse yourself, the installation prefix should be set to /usr/local.

Important note: under normal circumstances, both /usr/local and /opt are owned by root and are not world-writable. If you are not the system administrator, then you will need to get them to install the files or use your home folder.

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