unlink


SYNOPSIS
       #include <unistd.h>

       int unlink(const char *pathname);

DESCRIPTION
       unlink() deletes a name from the filesystem.  If that 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 for it 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
       EACCES Write access to the directory containing pathname is not allowed
              for  the  process's  effective UID, or one of the directories in
              pathname did not allow search permission.  (See also  path_reso-
              lution(7).)

       EBUSY  The file pathname cannot be unlinked because it is being used by
              the system or another process; for example, it is a mount  point
              or the NFS client software created it to represent an active but
              otherwise nameless inode ("NFS silly renamed").

       EFAULT pathname points outside your accessible address space.

       EIO    An I/O error occurred.

       EISDIR pathname refers to a directory.  (This is  the  non-POSIX  value
              returned by Linux since 2.1.132.)

       ELOOP  Too  many  symbolic  links were encountered in translating path-
              name.

       ENAMETOOLONG
              pathname was too long.

       ENOENT A component in pathname does not exist or is a dangling symbolic
              link, or pathname is empty.

       ENOMEM Insufficient kernel memory was available.

       EPERM or EACCES
              The  directory  containing pathname has the sticky bit (S_ISVTX)
              set and the process's effective UID is neither the  UID  of  the
              file  to be deleted nor that of the directory containing it, and
              the  process  is  not  privileged  (Linux:  does  not  have  the
              CAP_FOWNER capability).

       EROFS  pathname refers to a file on a read-only filesystem.

CONFORMING TO
       SVr4, 4.3BSD, POSIX.1-2001.

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

SEE ALSO
       rm(1),  chmod(2),  link(2),  mknod(2),  open(2),  rename(2),  rmdir(2),
       unlinkat(2), mkfifo(3), remove(3), path_resolution(7), symlink(7)

COLOPHON
       This  page  is  part of release 3.54 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/.



Linux                             2011-09-15                         UNLINK(2)
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