find -L /path/to/check -type l -delete

Find broken symlinks and delete them

If you don't want to delete them, but just want to list them, do find -L /path -type l If you want to delete them with confirmation first, do find -L /path -type l -exec rm -i {} + Using the -L flag follows symlinks, so the -type l test only returns true if the link can't be followed, or is a symlink to another broken symlink.

19
2009-06-06 16:07:04

3 Alternatives + Submit Alt

What Others Think

Or use the widely available symlinks command: symlinks -dr -d - delete dangling links -r - recursively
flatcap · 467 weeks and 5 days ago
@flatcap, that's really cool. I didn't know of that package. It isn't installed by default on Ubuntu, and I bet probably not default on many other distros. If all you want is to delete dangling symlinks, it's probably overkill to install a new package when find can do it just fine.
goodevilgenius · 467 weeks and 4 days ago
@goodevilgenius you must be thinking of some other operating system when you say it's overkill to install another package. :-) Under ubuntu 8.04 the symlinks package only consumes 61.4kB of additional disk space, according to dpkg/apt. I'd say that that extra 61.4kB is a win, since you have to type less and symlinks offers more features for fixing/cleaning symlinks than find does.
bwoodacre · 467 weeks and 3 days ago
Using `find -L` can cause unexpected results: see http://unix.stackexchange.com/a/38691/9382
rozcietrzewiacz · 314 weeks and 2 days ago

What do you think?

Any thoughts on this command? Does it work on your machine? Can you do the same thing with only 14 characters?

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