Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Having gone through the /etc/cron.daily directory I noticed that there is only the mlocate.cron file in comparison to what I have seen on other material where they cite slocate.cron. Is there a difference between these and their respective commands and if so what are they?

share|improve this question
up vote 11 down vote accepted explains that mlocate merges databases at each update, which offers a performance speedup since it can skip previously examined files.

They are competing implementations, but mlocate is designed to be backwards compatible with slocate and is slowly replacing it.

share|improve this answer
Thanks. When you say that mlocate merges databases at each update, what does this mean exactly? – PeanutsMonkey Jul 23 '11 at 1:40
@Peanuts, looking at the link provided by Stephanie, it seems that mlocate (which makes a database of file locations) reuses a previous database each time it runs, so any new information is merged with the old information, to save time and give a performance speedup. – pavium Jul 23 '11 at 2:26
@pavium - So would this mean that I would have multiple mlocate.cron files? – PeanutsMonkey Jul 23 '11 at 4:44
@peanuts, no, the databases are merged:- the new data generated when the mlocate.cron runs is merged with the old data from the last time it ran. It doesn't mean we need multiple mlocate.cron files. – pavium Jul 23 '11 at 4:56
@pavium - So essentially it is appending new data to the old. Is thar correct? – PeanutsMonkey Jul 23 '11 at 5:04

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.