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rename - change the name of a file
Standard C Library (libc, -lc)
rename(const char *from, const char *to);
The rename() system call causes the link named from to be renamed as to.
If to exists, it is first removed. Both from and to must be of the same
type (that is, both directories or both non-directories), and must reside
on the same file system.
The rename() system call guarantees that if to already exists, an
instance of to will always exist, even if the system should crash in the
middle of the operation.
If the final component of from is a symbolic link, the symbolic link is
renamed, not the file or directory to which it points.
The rename() function returns the value 0 if successful; otherwise the
value -1 is returned and the global variable errno is set to indicate the
The rename() system call will fail and neither of the argument files will
be affected if:
[ENAMETOOLONG] A component of either pathname exceeded 255
characters, or the entire length of either path name
exceeded 1023 characters.
[ENOENT] A component of the from path does not exist, or a path
prefix of to does not exist.
[EACCES] A component of either path prefix denies search
[EACCES] The requested link requires writing in a directory
with a mode that denies write permission.
[EPERM] The file pointed at by the from argument has its
immutable, undeletable or append-only flag set, see
the chflags(2) manual page for more information.
[EPERM] The parent directory of the file pointed at by the
from argument has its immutable or append-only flag
[EPERM] The parent directory of the file pointed at by the to
argument has its immutable flag set.
[EPERM] The directory containing from is marked sticky, and
neither the containing directory nor from are owned by
the effective user ID.
[EPERM] The file pointed at by the to argument exists, the
directory containing to is marked sticky, and neither
the containing directory nor to are owned by the
effective user ID.
[ELOOP] Too many symbolic links were encountered in
translating either pathname.
[ENOTDIR] A component of either path prefix is not a directory.
[ENOTDIR] The from argument is a directory, but to is not a
[EISDIR] The to argument is a directory, but from is not a
[EXDEV] The link named by to and the file named by from are on
different logical devices (file systems). Note that
this error code will not be returned if the
implementation permits cross-device links.
[ENOSPC] The directory in which the entry for the new name is
being placed cannot be extended because there is no
space left on the file system containing the
[EDQUOT] The directory in which the entry for the new name is
being placed cannot be extended because the user’s
quota of disk blocks on the file system containing the
directory has been exhausted.
[EIO] An I/O error occurred while making or updating a
[EROFS] The requested link requires writing in a directory on
a read-only file system.
[EFAULT] Path points outside the process’s allocated address
[EINVAL] The from argument is a parent directory of to, or an
attempt is made to rename ‘.’ or ‘..’.
[ENOTEMPTY] The to argument is a directory and is not empty.
chflags(2), open(2), symlink(7)
The rename() system call is expected to conform to ISO/IEC 9945-1:1996