A special type of file that references a file or directory.

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50
votes
3answers
13k views

Why hard links not allowed to directories in UNIX/Linux

I read in text books that UNIX/Linux doesn't allows hard links to directories but soft links do. Is it because, when we have cycles and if we create hardlinks, and after some time we delete the ...
27
votes
7answers
8k views

What is the difference between symbolic and hard links?

When would you use one over the other?
6
votes
5answers
936 views

Dynamic Symlinks

I have built my app for different architectures and would like to create a "dynamic symlink" which takes me to the right version based on a variable. If the machine I am currently logged in to, is ...
23
votes
3answers
6k views

How can I “relink” a lot of broken symlinks?

I have a directory tree which has a bunch of symbolic links to files under /home... however, I have moved /home to /mnt/home and need a way to "relink" all of the symlinks. Does such functionality ...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

Why are reboot, shutdown and poweroff symlinks to systemctl?

In Arch Linux, if I do ls -l in /sbin, I can see that reboot, shutdown and poweroff are all symlinks to /usr/bin/systemctl. But issuing reboot, shutdown and systemctl commands obviously does not all ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

pwd without symlinks

If I do pwd I notice it uses whatever symlinks I used to get into the current directory. Can I get it to tell me the "real" directory I'm in ... i.e. the path from the root to my current directory ...
4
votes
3answers
111 views

How can I edit symlinks?

My basic understanding of a symlink is as a special file, a file that contains a string path to another file. The kernel's VFS abstracts a lot of that away but is there any reason why symlinks seem to ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Find only destination of symlink

For use in a shell-script, I'm looking for a commandline-way to get the destination of a symbolic link. The closest I've come so far is stat -N src, which outputs src -> dst. Of course I could ...
43
votes
6answers
11k views

How can I find broken symlinks

Is there a way to find all symbolic links that don't point anywere? find ./ -type l will give me all symbolic links, but makes no distinction between links that go somewhere and links that don't. ...
12
votes
4answers
7k views

Converting relative path to absolute path

Is there a *nix command to get absolute(and canonicalized) path from relative path(with current path) or symbolic link?
9
votes
4answers
3k views

symbolic link to a directory and relative path

I've created symlink with absolute path to the directory (Blink) and have for example following tree: $ ls -l /tmp/A total 0 lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 6 Apr 3 12:27 Blink -> /tmp/B -rw-r--r-- 1 root ...
7
votes
3answers
7k views

Are there any drawbacks from using mount --bind as a substitute for symbolic links?

Symlinks have limitations in how functions like ls, mv, and cp can operate on them because unlike shell initiated commands like cd, these functions do not have information about how the user accessed ...
7
votes
1answer
309 views

Is there a way to make perl -i not clobber symlinks?

A friend of mine points out that if you do: perl -pi.bak -e 's/foo/bar/' somefile when "somefile" is actually a symlink, perl does just what the docs say it will do: It does this by renaming ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Get path of current script when executed through a symlink

I have a utility consisting of a couple directories with some bash scripts and supporting files that will be deployed to several machines possibly in a different directory on each machine. The ...
9
votes
1answer
3k views

Make cd follow symbolic links

I have my code mounted as an sshfs in my home directory, but the hierarchy is difficult to remember, so I created a symlink in my home directory leading to that directory. Is there a way so that when ...
5
votes
1answer
349 views

Symbolic links with ls, mv: forcing the functions to utilize “logical” addresses (remembering the original path)

It seems that for many basic functions operating on symbolic links, the physical path is used by default. However, cd works fine. When moving into a symbolic link, cd remembers where I came from so it ...
4
votes
2answers
703 views

Why is bash completion of a symlink different than a directory?

I usually do a find with an environment variable as the path when searching for source code. Recently I replaced my environment variable with a symbolic link, and it broke Bash's shell completion. ...
4
votes
6answers
1k views

Is it possible to “roll” a symlink to a new file without affecting any open file handles?

An application I am developing locally logs it's output to files formatted with the current timestamp such as app-%Y%m%d.log. To make it simple to be able to tail the current's day log in a terminal ...
3
votes
1answer
385 views

How do you increase MAXSYMLINKS

In a python script, I am creating a bunch of symbolic links chained together. example: link1->link2->link3->.......->somefile.txt I was wondering how you can change the max number of symlinks to be ...
7
votes
4answers
526 views

Linking /proc/mnt to /proc/mounts

I understand that /proc filesystem reflects the output of various processes. Unfortunately, I have a propietary (romdump) binary that expects the mount table to appear as /proc/mtd, while my Android ...
4
votes
4answers
411 views

Symbolic link and hard link questions

Let's say /A/B/c.sh is symbolic linked to /X/Y/c.sh. If c.sh has the command "./SOMETHING", '.' means /A/B/ or /X/Y/? How about the hard link?
3
votes
1answer
60 views

Test for link with trailing slash?

I created in /tmp/test/ mkdir somedir ln -s somedir/ somelink I want to loop through only directories: for file in */ ; do if [[ -d "$file" && ! -L "$file" ]]; then echo "$file is a ...
3
votes
3answers
623 views

Linux find and remove all symlinks relating to a directory

So, I have a bit of a situation where I created many symlinks in an attempt to get them to work, trying all sorts of combinations .. now I have this error: ls: cannot access /etc/sv/me: Too many ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

How does /dev/fd relate to /proc/self/fd/?

$ ls -l /dev/stdin /dev/fd/0 lrwx------ 1 tim tim 64 2011-08-07 09:53 /dev/fd/0 -> /dev/pts/2 lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 15 2011-08-06 08:14 /dev/stdin -> /proc/self/fd/0 $ ls -l /dev/pts/2 ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Recursive scp without following links or creating a giant tar file?

So I did a recursive scp on my remote fileserver (in another state) and it created an infinite loop of links on my remote web directory... ...
2
votes
1answer
503 views

How do I dereference links when extracting from a tar file?

If I have a tar file, bob.tar, which contains real_file and link_to_real_file, in which the latter is a symlink, is there a way to extract the contents of bob.tar so that link_to_real_file will not be ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Why can't list file/directory relative to .. from a symbolic link directory (No such file or directory)?

I have a /usr/tomcat6/logs directory linked to /var/log/tomcat6. When I changed directory to /usr/tomcat6/logs and try to ls files using a relative pathname ../conf/Catalina/localhost, a No such file ...