See this question:

Adding to path vs. linking from /bin

There are two differing answers that I, as a non-expert, have no real way to know which is more correct. I don't want to accept an incorrect answer because it might mislead future non-experts arriving at the same question. What do I do?

EDIT: According to the SE rules, the OP has the right to accept whatever answer he/she prefers, even if it is totally incorrect. But what if I, as the OP, do want to accept the most correct answer? Maybe there should be a way for the OP, in case he doesn't know what to accept, to pass the acceptance decision to the community in some way?

  • It's OK if you pick the wrong one, so your selection of mine was fine, originally (not saying mine was wrong, jus the selection was fine). Most SE sites are littered with Q&A's where there is an accept but then an A that has 2x the votes along side it, this is usually a change in the tech that led to this new A being better, but the OP never bothered to change it.
    – slm Mod
    Commented Feb 25, 2014 at 14:50

2 Answers 2


You should accept the one that you prefer. That's it. You're the OP, you get to choose.

In this specific case, the answers do not contradict each other, they both give valid reasons why linking is not the best approach. You have chosen to accept the most comprehensive one. That seems very reasonable.

As a general rule, the OP has the right to accept whatever she/he wants. It is a personal choice. I have seen actual wrong answers accepted by the OP and I have seen lower quality ones accepted despite a much better answer having been given. Sometimes, given two equivalent answers, you can choose the one whose author has the lower reputation, just to help him out (as long as both answers are equally good). It's completely up to you.


Yes as one of the answerers, I thought it was incorrect of Jllarge to pressure you into (unaccepting my answer) vs. accepting his. Not from the perspective that mine was right or his was right but that as the OP it's your prerogative. You even said to him in comments on his answer why you chose mine vs. his.

Normally I would've said nothing, but I took personal issue with how the entire experience was for you as the OP and that Jlliarge had either intentionally or unintentionally persuaded you to accept his.

If someone has issue with an answer they should take it up with the answerer, that's what comments are for. Neither of us are in a position where we can conclusively say that making a link in /bin will work or not, we can only offer you up examples from past experiences of when this will/won't work.

In my original answer, I stated this fairly broadly for this exact reason. As is the case with Unix, the system is very malleable and so can fit a variety of situations, typically leaving the exact implementation up to the practitioner. Hence your confusion in which approach to use 8-).

In your case I answered your question from my 20+ years of experience working at a fortune 500 company supports 100's of engineers that ran 100's of engineering applications on 100's of computers (Windows, Linux, and Solaris). I also worked the last 6+ years in the WWW end supporting a Fortune 500 website (B2C, B2B, etc.) that ran a variety of applications include Java based solutions using Tomcat, JBoss, Ant, and Maven. I'm doing the same things now too!

So I'm more than qualified to answer your question and I know a thing or to about the correct ways to install and manage applications. Not trying to toot my own horn, but just making a point as to why my answer tried to strike a balanced approach of giving you some of the perils but then providing you with practical solutions to your problem.

I would've let @Terdon's excellent answer sit but this behavior really rubbed me the wrong way and I felt compelled to say something about it when I saw you had asked this on Meta.

I hope your experience on U&L was still a positive one, we all try very hard to provide high quality answers to the OP's and most of us strive to push the best answers to the top, even at the cost of our own!

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