Originally Posted by Peverel
However, the soft link points to an absolute address, which is the old, superseded, directory entry.
No! A soft link simply contains a path (either relative or absolute) and will be resolved by the kernel just like any other path. It will always reach the file that currently has the name
contained in the path, i.e., the new file. There is no way (via the filesystem**) to reach the old, unlinked file unless it had another hard link.
** For a file still held open by a process, there is a way via /proc to reach the inode even though there is no longer any link within the filesystem.