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Bug 453208 - perl -e file test misses broken symlinks
perl -e file test misses broken symlinks
Product: Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4
Classification: Red Hat
Component: perl (Show other bugs)
i386 Linux
low Severity low
: rc
: ---
Assigned To: Marcela Mašláňová
Depends On:
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Reported: 2008-06-27 15:52 EDT by Steve
Modified: 2008-08-14 08:57 EDT (History)
0 users

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Doc Type: Bug Fix
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Last Closed: 2008-08-14 08:57:23 EDT
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Description Steve 2008-06-27 15:52:17 EDT
Description of problem:

Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):

How reproducible:

Steps to Reproduce:
1. create a directory (mkdir /tmp/test1)
2. make a symlink to it (ln -s /tmp/test1 /tmp/linktest1)
3. move or delete the directory (mv /tmp/test1 /tmp/test1moved)
4. now the link is broken, so try running this script:

my $filename = "/tmp/linktest1";
my $directory = "/tmp";

if( -e $filename)
    `/bin/rm -f $filename`;

if( -d $directory)
    `/bin/ln -s /tmp/test1moved $filename`;

Actual results:
The script gives this for output:

/bin/ln: `/tmp/linktest1': File exists

Basically, it does not enter the first if statement, and the broken link is 
not deleted.  However, if you replace the "-e" test with the "-l" test, the 
broken link is deleted.  

Expected results:

I would expect that the -e flag with see the broken link as a file, which 
would then cause it to be deleted.  Note that the above test program does work 
fine if the link is not broken.  

Additional info:  Obviously, I don't really need the rm command inside of the 
if statement, because it doesn't really matter if the file exists or not.  
However, I noticed that the -e flag didn't work as I expected it to, and I 
thought someone else might run into it unexpectedly on something more 
important.  Let me know if you need more info.
Comment 1 Marcela Mašláňová 2008-08-14 08:57:23 EDT
This must be a conventional behaviour. If you try the same with bash, it ends the same way.

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