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Too many levels of symbolic links

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Old 09-19-2003
Bab00shka Bab00shka is offline
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Too many levels of symbolic links

Hi,

Is there a limit to the number of symbolic links you can have?

I tried to vi the symbolic link relating to a file and got the following error:

"filename" Too many levels of symbolic links

There is only one symbolic link to one file in this case, but there are >2000 other links to other files over the whole systems.

We are using HP-UX 11.0 and there is space in all partitions

Can anyone help please?
Cheers
Helen

Last edited by Bab00shka; 09-19-2003 at 09:53 AM..
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Old 09-19-2003
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Perderabo Perderabo is offline Forum Staff  
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You can have many symbolic links in a filesystem. The limiting factor is how many inodes are available. That is not the problem. You have too many symbolic links for this particular pathname.

Suppose the system tries to open a file called "a". But it finds that "a" is a symbolic link to "b". The system then must open "b". But "b" is a symbolic link to "c". Now the system must open "c". And "c" could be a symbolic link to "d" and so on. The system must reach a real file or directory after 32 tries. If not, the open will fail.

32 is a lot. I'll bet you have a loop. Something like this:

ln -s a b
ln -s b a
vi a
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Old 09-19-2003
Bab00shka Bab00shka is offline
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I can see now what has happened, the equivalent of

ln -s filename filename

I'd assumed that the link was

ln -s filename /different/directory/filename

Been working too many hours I think! Thanks Perderabo :-)

Cheers
Helen
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