Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 473662
rm -d broken
Last modified: 2009-05-18 16:07:21 EDT
Cloning that bugzilla as -d is noop in coreutils-5.2.1 and it could easily confuse users from usage -rf option.
+++ This bug was initially created as a clone of Bug #473472 +++
Description of problem:
Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
Steps to Reproduce:
1. mkdir /tmp/abc
2. rm -d /tmp/abc
3. output complains it's a directory but man page says rm -d should remove a directory.
rm: cannot remove `abc': Is a directory
dir should be removed. also tried as root, same problem.
--- Additional comment from email@example.com on 2008-11-28 14:11:30 EDT ---
Thanks for report. Now the option -d is deprecated in upstream coreutils - with comment:
/* Ignore this option, for backward compatibility with
coreutils 5.92. FIXME: Some time after 2005, change this
to report an error (or perhaps behave like FreeBSD does)
instead of ignoring the option. */
This option seems to be not working at all in RHEL-4/RHEL-5 coreutils, as it only activates boolean which is unused in the sourcecode. Activation boolean was removed from remove.c by http://git.savannah.gnu.org/gitweb/?p=coreutils.git;a=commitdiff;h=fb205872c1038139e118022014db0d6d817c34ec
in June 2002, coreutils-5.2.1 (RHEL-4) are releasad in March 2004.
You should use -rf for removing non-empty directories, the best solution for that bugzilla would be to remove that confusing option from the help, man and info page as it is noop.
--- Additional comment from firstname.lastname@example.org on 2008-11-29 14:31:51 EDT ---
Since it's the first option in the man page, removing it from future versions would be a great help. I am servicing end users from another operating system and they were using the man pages heavily so they didn't read past the first option for removing a directory to see rm -rf. Thanks.
An advisory has been issued which should help the problem
described in this bug report. This report is therefore being
closed with a resolution of ERRATA. For more information
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