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remove.3

REMOVE

Section: Linux Programmer's Manual (3)
Updated: 2008-12-03
Index Return to Main Contents
 

NAME

remove - remove a file or directory  

SYNOPSIS

#include <stdio.h>

int remove(const char *pathname);  

DESCRIPTION

remove() deletes a name from the file system. It calls unlink(2) for files, and rmdir(2) for directories.

If the removed name was the last link to a file and no processes have the file open, the file is deleted and the space it was using is made available for reuse.

If the name was the last link to a file, but any processes still have the file open, the file will remain in existence until the last file descriptor referring to it is closed.

If the name referred to a symbolic link, the link is removed.

If the name referred to a socket, FIFO, or device, the name is removed, but processes which have the object open may continue to use it.  

RETURN VALUE

On success, zero is returned. On error, -1 is returned, and errno is set appropriately.  

ERRORS

The errors that occur are those for unlink(2) and rmdir(2).  

CONFORMING TO

C89, C99, 4.3BSD, POSIX.1-2001.  

NOTES

Under libc4 and libc5, remove() was an alias for unlink(2) (and hence would not remove directories).  

BUGS

Infelicities in the protocol underlying NFS can cause the unexpected disappearance of files which are still being used.  

SEE ALSO

rm(1), unlink(1), link(2), mknod(2), open(2), rename(2), rmdir(2), unlink(2), mkfifo(3), symlink(7)  

COLOPHON

This page is part of release 3.21 of the Linux man-pages project. A description of the project, and information about reporting bugs, can be found at http://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/.


 

Index

NAME
SYNOPSIS
DESCRIPTION
RETURN VALUE
ERRORS
CONFORMING TO
NOTES
BUGS
SEE ALSO
COLOPHON

 

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