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I have tried find . -name "*.pdf" in various folders where I would initially think that the pdf files would be exported to. Both /usr/share/texlive and /usr/share/textstudio does not contain either my tex files nor their pdf exports. I have run pdflatex command, and read somewhere they should be located where the tex files are. But I cannot find them.

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The file you'll get by running e.g. pdflatex novel.tex will show up in the same directory where novel.tex is located (unless something went wrong and no PDF file was written), normally called novel.pdf. Usually you'll set up a directory in your $HOME for each (set of) documents you work on. E.g., one your your hopefully prize-winning novel, one for letters, one for your regular column on Ubuntu, Gnus and Gnats, ... and work there.

The directories you cite contain the packages that make up your TeX distribution, do not mess with them unless you do know what you are doing. And if you do know, you'll know to leave them well alone.

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