The Single UNIX ® Specification, Version 2
Copyright © 1997 The Open Group


readlink - read the contents of a symbolic link


#include <unistd.h>

int readlink(const char *path, char *buf, size_t bufsize);


The readlink() function places the contents of the symbolic link referred to by path in the buffer buf which has size bufsize. If the number of bytes in the symbolic link is less than bufsize, the contents of the remainder of buf are unspecified.


Upon successful completion, readlink() returns the count of bytes placed in the buffer. Otherwise, it returns a value of -1, leaves the buffer unchanged, and sets errno to indicate the error.


The readlink() function will fail if:
Search permission is denied for a component of the path prefix of path.
The path argument names a file that is not a symbolic link.
An I/O error occurred while reading from the file system.
A component of path does not name an existing file or path is an empty string.
Too many symbolic links were encountered in resolving path.
The length of path exceeds {PATH_MAX}, or a pathname component is longer than {NAME_MAX}.
A component of the path prefix is not a directory.

The readlink() function may fail if:

Read permission is denied for the directory.
Pathname resolution of a symbolic link produced an intermediate result whose length exceeds {PATH_MAX}.




Portable applications should not assume that the returned contents of the symbolic link are null-terminated.


The return value may change in a future issue to align with IEEE PASC.


stat(), symlink(), <unistd.h>.

UNIX ® is a registered Trademark of The Open Group.
Copyright © 1997 The Open Group
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