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UNLINK(2)		   Linux Programmer's Manual		     UNLINK(2)

       unlink - delete a name and possibly the file it refers to

       #include <unistd.h>

       int unlink(const char *pathname);

       unlink()	 deletes  a  name  from the file system.  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

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

       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‐

       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‐

	      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.

	      A	 component  used as a directory in pathname is not, in fact, a

       EPERM  The system does not allow unlinking of directories, or unlinking
	      of  directories  requires	 privileges  that  the calling process
	      doesn't have.  (This is the POSIX prescribed  error  return;  as
	      noted above, Linux returns EISDIR for this case.)

       EPERM (Linux only)
	      The file system does not allow unlinking of files.

       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 file system.

       SVr4, 4.3BSD, POSIX.1-2001.

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

       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)

       This  page  is  part of release 3.53 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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