UNLINK(2) BSD Programmer's Manual UNLINK(2)
unlink - remove directory entry
unlink(const char *path);
The unlink() function removes the link named by path from its directory
and decrements the link count of the file which was referenced by the
link. If that decrement reduces the link count of the file to zero, and
no process has the file open, then all resources associated with the file
are reclaimed. If one or more process have the file open when the last
link is removed, the link is removed, but the removal of the file is de-
layed until all references to it have been closed.
Upon successful completion, a value of 0 is returned. Otherwise, a value
of -1 is returned and errno is set to indicate the error.
The unlink() succeeds unless:
[ENOTDIR] A component of the path prefix is not a directory.
[EINVAL] The pathname contains a character with the high-order bit
[ENAMETOOLONG] A component of a pathname exceeded 255 characters, or an
entire path name exceeded 1023 characters.
[ENOENT] The named file does not exist.
[EACCES] Search permission is denied for a component of the path
[EACCES] Write permission is denied on the directory containing
the link to be removed.
[ELOOP] Too many symbolic links were encountered in translating
[EPERM] The named file is a directory and the effective user ID
of the process is not the super-user.
[EPERM] The directory containing the file is marked sticky, and
neither the containing directory nor the file to be re-
moved are owned by the effective user ID.
[EBUSY] The entry to be unlinked is the mount point for a mounted
[EIO] An I/O error occurred while deleting the directory entry
or deallocating the inode.
[EROFS] The named file resides on a read-only file system.
[EFAULT] Path points outside the process's allocated address
close(2), link(2), rmdir(2) symlink(7)
An unlink function call appeared in Version 6 AT&T UNIX.
4th Berkeley Distribution June 4, 1993 2