March 15, 2016

Absolute Path vs Relative Path in Linux/Unix

One of this blog follower asked us that whatâs the difference between absolute and relative path?

To understand this we have to know what is a path in Linux.

What is a path?

A path is a unique location to a file or a folder in a file system of an OS. A path to a file is a combination of / and alpha-numeric characters.

What is an absolute path?

An absolute path is defined as the specifying the location of a file or directory from the root directory(/). In other words we can say absolute path is a complete path from start of actual filesystem from / directory.

Some examples of absolute path:

/var/ftp/pub
/etc/samba.smb.conf
/boot/grub/grub.conf

If you see all these paths started from / directory which is a root directory for every Linux/Unix machines.

What is the relative path?

 

Relative path is defined as path related to the present working directory(pwd). Suppose I am located in /var/log and I want to change directory to /var/log/kernel. I can use relative path concept to change directory to kernel

 

changing directory to /var/log/kernel by using relative path concept.

 

pwd/var/logcd kernel

 

Note: If you observe there is no / before kernel which indicates itâs a relative directory to present working directory.

 

Changing directory to /var/log/kernel using absolute path concept.

 

cd /var/log/kernel

 

Note: We can use an absolute path from any location where as if you want to use relative path we should be present in a directory where we are going to specify relative to that present working directory.

 

Examples of relative path and absolute path for the same operation.

Read full post:  http://www.linuxnix.com/abslute-path-vs-relative-path-in-linuxunix/

 

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