Hello, my question for you all is this...
It's my understanding that over time any system will build up junk files that were used by packages that have since been uninstalled, or files that are no longer used by a newer version of some program, and so on. The thought of this bothers me, and at the current time, disk space is at a bit of a premium. What's the best way to deal with this short of Windows-style ritual formatting?
Thank you in advance!
You're mistaken. If you uninstall packages with pacman -Rn (to also remove config files or anything else listed in the backup= array) there will be no junk left. The only stuff that accumulates on your system over time are the usual logfiles in /var/log (see logrotate and syslog-ng docs on how to tweak that) and dotfiles/folders in your homedir from unused applications.
What a beautiful system. Any problems with dead-end links being left hanging around? Any sort of file maintenance to do at all besides what you described? Thank you!
What about per-app config file located in /home/me/.my-app ?
I don't think these are ever removed when removing a package (and that's fine) so that there are still some "junk" files building up...
Well, the /home/me/.my-app config folder should be safely removed by the user if he decides he never wants to use that application again, this folder only contains the settings you used for that file, most of the time. Also if you are worried about junk in general you can use KleanSweep available in community, but beware is a KDE application so you might not want it if you use GNOME because of the KDE dependencies. Also a warning, you should be an advanced user to not make any mistakes with this application, you can delete useful configuration files if not cautious.