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 rm(1)                                                                 rm(1)

 NAME    [Toc]    [Back]
      rm - remove files or directories

 SYNOPSIS    [Toc]    [Back]
      rm [-f|-i] [-Rr] file ...

 DESCRIPTION    [Toc]    [Back]
      The rm command removes the entries for one or more files from a
      directory.  If an entry was the last link to the file, the file is
      destroyed.  Removal of a file requires write and search (execute)
      permission in its directory, but no permissions on the file itself.
      However, if the sticky bit is set on the directory containing the
      file, only the owner of the file, the owner of the directory, or a
      user having appropriate privileges can remove the file.

      If a user does not have write permission for a file to be removed and
      standard input is a terminal, a prompt containing the file name and
      its permissions is printed requesting that the removal of the file be
      confirmed (see Access Control Lists below).  A line is then read from
      standard input.  If that line begins with y the file is deleted;
      otherwise, the file remains.  No questions are asked when the -f
      option is given or if standard input is not a terminal.

      If file is of type directory, and the -f option is not specified, and
      either the permissions of file do not permit writing and standard
      input is a terminal or the -i option is specified, rm writes a prompt
      to standard error and reads a line from standard input.  If the
      response does not begin with y, it does nothing more with the current
      file and goes on to any remaining files.

      If file is a symbolic link, then only the symbolic link is removed.
      The file or directory pointed to by the symbolic link is not affected.
      If any of the intermediate path components of file happens to be a
      symbolic link, then rm follows the symbolic link and removes the file.

    Options    [Toc]    [Back]
      rm recognizes the following options:

           -f   Force each file or directory to be removed without prompting
                for confirmation, regardless of the permissions of the
                entry.  This option also suppresses diagnostic messages
                regarding nonexistent operands.

                This option does not suppress any diagnostic messages other
                than those regarding nonexistent operands.  To suppress all
                error message and interactive prompts, the -f option should
                be used while redirecting standard error output to

                This option ignores any previous occurrence of the -i

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 1 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003

 rm(1)                                                                 rm(1)

           -i   Write a prompt to standard error requesting confirmation
                before removing each entry.

                This option ignores any previous occurrence of the -f

           -R   For each argument that is a directory, this option causes rm
                to recursively delete the entire contents of that directory
                before removing the directory itself.  When used in
                conjunction with the -i option, rm asks whether to examine
                each directory before interactively removing files in that
                directory and again afterward to confirm removing the
                directory itself.

                The -R option will descend to arbitrary depths in a file
                hierarchy and will not fail due to path length limitations
                unless the length of file name, file specified by the user
                exceeds system limitations.

           -r   Equivalent to -R.

    Access Control Lists    [Toc]    [Back]
      If a file has optional ACL entries, rm displays a plus sign (+) after
      the file's permissions.  The permissions shown summarize the file's
      st_mode value returned by stat() (see stat(2)).  See also acl(5).

    Environment Variables
      LANG provides a default value for the internationalization variables
      that are unset or null. If LANG is unset or null, the default value of
      "C" (see lang(5)) is used. If any of the internationalization
      variables contains an invalid setting, rm will behave as if all
      internationalization variables are set to "C".  See environ(5).

      LC_ALL If set to a non-empty string value, overrides the values of all
      the other internationalization variables.

      LC_CTYPE determines the interpretation of file names as single and/or
      multi-byte characters, the classification of characters as printable,
      and the characters matched by character class expressions in regular

      LC_MESSAGES determines the locale that should be used to affect the
      format and contents of diagnostic messages written to standard error
      and informative messages written to standard output.

      NLSPATH determines the location of message catalogues for the
      processing of LC_MESSAGES.

    International Code Set Support    [Toc]    [Back]
      Single- and multibyte character code sets are supported.

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 2 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003

 rm(1)                                                                 rm(1)

 DIAGNOSTICS    [Toc]    [Back]
      Generally self-explanatory.  Note that the -f option does not suppress
      all diagnostic messages.

      It is forbidden to remove the file .., in order to avoid the
      consequences of using a command such as:

           rm -r .*

      If a designated file is a directory, an error comment is printed
      unless the -R or -r option is used.

 RETURN VALUE    [Toc]    [Back]
      rm exits with one of the following values:

            0   If the -f option is not specified, 0 is returned only if all
                the named directory entries (the arguments specified in the
                rm command) are removed.

                If the -f option is specified, then all the existing named
                directory entries are removed. If any of the named directory
                entries are non-existent, rm still returns a zero.

           >0   An error occurred.

 EXAMPLES    [Toc]    [Back]
      Remove files with a prompt for verification:

           rm -i file1 file2

      Remove all the files in a directory:

           rm -i mydirectory/*

      Note that the previous command removes files only, and does not remove
      any directories in mydirectory.

      Remove a file in the current directory whose name starts with - or *
      or some other character that is special to the shell:

           rm ./-filename
           rm \*filename

      Remove a file in the current directory whose name starts with some
      strange (usually nonprinting, invisible) character or perhaps has
      spaces at the beginning or end of the filename, prompting for

           rm -i *filename*

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 3 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003

 rm(1)                                                                 rm(1)

      If *filename* is not unique in the directory, enter n when each of the
      other files is prompted.

      A powerful and dangerous command to remove a directory is:

           rm -fR directoryname


           rm -Rf directoryname

      which removes all files and directories from directoryname without any
      prompting for verification to remove the files or the directories.
      This command should only be used when you are absolutely certain that
      all the files and directories in directoryname as well as
      directoryname itself are to be removed.

 DEPENDENCIES    [Toc]    [Back]
      rm does not display a plus sign (+) to indicate the existence of
      optional access control list entries when asking for confirmation
      before removing a networked file.

 SEE ALSO    [Toc]    [Back]
      rmdir(1), unlink(2), acl(5).

      rm: SVID2, SVID3, XPG2, XPG3, XPG4, POSIX.2

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 4 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003
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