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NAME

       link, linkat - make a new name for a file

SYNOPSIS

       #include <unistd.h>

       int link(const char *oldpath, const char *newpath);

       #include <fcntl.h>           /* Definition of AT_* constants */
       #include <unistd.h>

       int linkat(int olddirfd, const char *oldpath,
                  int newdirfd, const char *newpath, int flags);

   Feature Test Macro Requirements for glibc (see feature_test_macros(7)):

       linkat():
           Since glibc 2.10:
               _POSIX_C_SOURCE >= 200809L
           Before glibc 2.10:
               _ATFILE_SOURCE

DESCRIPTION

       link() creates a new link (also known as a hard link) to an existing file.

       If newpath exists, it will not be overwritten.

       This  new  name  may be used exactly as the old one for any operation; both names refer to
       the same file (and so have the same permissions and ownership) and  it  is  impossible  to
       tell which name was the "original".

   linkat()
       The  linkat()  system  call  operates  in  exactly  the same way as link(), except for the
       differences described here.

       If the pathname given in oldpath is relative, then  it  is  interpreted  relative  to  the
       directory referred to by the file descriptor olddirfd (rather than relative to the current
       working directory of the calling process, as is done by link() for a relative pathname).

       If oldpath is relative and olddirfd  is  the  special  value  AT_FDCWD,  then  oldpath  is
       interpreted  relative  to  the  current  working  directory  of  the calling process (like
       link()).

       If oldpath is absolute, then olddirfd is ignored.

       The interpretation of newpath is as for  oldpath,  except  that  a  relative  pathname  is
       interpreted relative to the directory referred to by the file descriptor newdirfd.

       The following values can be bitwise ORed in flags:

       AT_EMPTY_PATH (since Linux 2.6.39)
              If  oldpath  is  an  empty string, create a link to the file referenced by olddirfd
              (which may have been obtained using  the  open(2)  O_PATH  flag).   In  this  case,
              olddirfd can refer to any type of file except a directory.  This will generally not
              work if the file has a link count of zero (files created with O_TMPFILE and without
              O_EXCL  are an exception).  The caller must have the CAP_DAC_READ_SEARCH capability
              in order to use this flag.  This flag  is  Linux-specific;  define  _GNU_SOURCE  to
              obtain its definition.

       AT_SYMLINK_FOLLOW (since Linux 2.6.18)
              By  default,  linkat(), does not dereference oldpath if it is a symbolic link (like
              link()).  The flag AT_SYMLINK_FOLLOW can be specified in flags to cause oldpath  to
              be  dereferenced  if it is a symbolic link.  If procfs is mounted, this can be used
              as an alternative to AT_EMPTY_PATH, like this:

                  linkat(AT_FDCWD, "/proc/self/fd/<fd>", newdirfd,
                         newname, AT_SYMLINK_FOLLOW);

       Before kernel 2.6.18, the flags argument was unused, and had to be specified as 0.

       See openat(2) for an explanation of the need for linkat().

RETURN VALUE

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

ERRORS

       EACCES Write access to the directory containing newpath is denied, or search permission is
              denied  for  one of the directories in the path prefix of oldpath or newpath.  (See
              also path_resolution(7).)

       EDQUOT The user's quota of disk blocks on the filesystem has been exhausted.

       EEXIST newpath already exists.

       EFAULT oldpath or newpath points outside your accessible address space.

       EIO    An I/O error occurred.

       ELOOP  Too many symbolic links were encountered in resolving oldpath or newpath.

       EMLINK The file referred to by oldpath already has the maximum number of links to it.  For
              example,  on  an ext4(5) filesystem that does not employ the dir_index feature, the
              limit on the number of hard links to a file is 65,000; on btrfs(5),  the  limit  is
              65,535 links.

       ENAMETOOLONG
              oldpath or newpath was too long.

       ENOENT A  directory  component  in  oldpath  or  newpath  does  not exist or is a dangling
              symbolic link.

       ENOMEM Insufficient kernel memory was available.

       ENOSPC The device containing the file has no room for the new directory entry.

       ENOTDIR
              A component used as a directory in oldpath or newpath is not, in fact, a directory.

       EPERM  oldpath is a directory.

       EPERM  The filesystem containing oldpath and newpath does not support the creation of hard
              links.

       EPERM (since Linux 3.6)
              The  caller  does  not  have permission to create a hard link to this file (see the
              description of /proc/sys/fs/protected_hardlinks in proc(5)).

       EPERM  oldpath is marked immutable or append-only.  (See ioctl_iflags(2).)

       EROFS  The file is on a read-only filesystem.

       EXDEV  oldpath and newpath are not on the  same  mounted  filesystem.   (Linux  permits  a
              filesystem  to  be  mounted  at  multiple  points,  but link() does not work across
              different mount points, even if the same filesystem is mounted on both.)

       The following additional errors can occur for linkat():

       EBADF  olddirfd or newdirfd is not a valid file descriptor.

       EINVAL An invalid flag value was specified in flags.

       ENOENT AT_EMPTY_PATH  was  specified  in  flags,  but  the  caller  did   not   have   the
              CAP_DAC_READ_SEARCH capability.

       ENOENT An  attempt  was  made to link to the /proc/self/fd/NN file corresponding to a file
              descriptor created with

                  open(path, O_TMPFILE | O_EXCL, mode);

              See open(2).

       ENOENT An attempt was made to link to a /proc/self/fd/NN file corresponding to a file that
              has been deleted.

       ENOENT oldpath  is  a  relative  pathname and olddirfd refers to a directory that has been
              deleted, or newpath is a relative pathname and newdirfd refers to a directory  that
              has been deleted.

       ENOTDIR
              oldpath  is  relative  and  olddirfd is a file descriptor referring to a file other
              than a directory; or similar for newpath and newdirfd

       EPERM  AT_EMPTY_PATH was specified in flags, oldpath is  an  empty  string,  and  olddirfd
              refers to a directory.

VERSIONS

       linkat()  was  added  to  Linux  in  kernel  2.6.16; library support was added to glibc in
       version 2.4.

CONFORMING TO

       link(): SVr4, 4.3BSD, POSIX.1-2001 (but see NOTES), POSIX.1-2008.

       linkat(): POSIX.1-2008.

NOTES

       Hard links, as created by link(), cannot span filesystems.   Use  symlink(2)  if  this  is
       required.

       POSIX.1-2001  says  that  link()  should  dereference  oldpath  if  it is a symbolic link.
       However, since kernel 2.0, Linux does not do so: if  oldpath  is  a  symbolic  link,  then
       newpath  is created as a (hard) link to the same symbolic link file (i.e., newpath becomes
       a symbolic link to the same file that oldpath  refers  to).   Some  other  implementations
       behave  in  the  same  manner as Linux.  POSIX.1-2008 changes the specification of link(),
       making it implementation-dependent whether or not oldpath  is  dereferenced  if  it  is  a
       symbolic  link.   For precise control over the treatment of symbolic links when creating a
       link, use linkat().

   Glibc notes
       On older kernels where linkat() is unavailable, the glibc wrapper function falls  back  to
       the  use  of  link(), unless the AT_SYMLINK_FOLLOW is specified.  When oldpath and newpath
       are relative pathnames,  glibc  constructs  pathnames  based  on  the  symbolic  links  in
       /proc/self/fd that correspond to the olddirfd and newdirfd arguments.

BUGS

       On  NFS filesystems, the return code may be wrong in case the NFS server performs the link
       creation and dies before it can say so.  Use stat(2) to find out if the link got created.

SEE ALSO

       ln(1), open(2), rename(2), stat(2), symlink(2), unlink(2), path_resolution(7), symlink(7)

COLOPHON

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       project,  information  about  reporting  bugs, and the latest version of this page, can be
       found at https://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/.