Linux - NewbieThis Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question?
If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!
Welcome to LinuxQuestions.org, a friendly and active Linux Community.
You are currently viewing LQ as a guest. By joining our community you will have the ability to post topics, receive our newsletter, use the advanced search, subscribe to threads and access many other special features. Registration is quick, simple and absolutely free. Join our community today!
Note that registered members see fewer ads, and ContentLink is completely disabled once you log in.
Could anyone explain the use of "\" (backward slash) with "rm" command.
I've seen, that many people use following command when delete a file or directory:
example% \rm -rf <directory>
So why thay use fwd slash before rm?
Thanks a lot.
I have never seen that. The backslash is an escape character, which is used to give characters to commands that would normally have a different meaning in the shell.
For example, if you have a filename with a space in it, for example "aaa bbb" you could not simply remove the file with
rm aaa bbb
because rm would try to remove two files, aaa and bbb, but not the file aaa bbb. To circumvent that you can either quote the filename
rm "aaa bbb"
or you escape the space in the filename
rm aaa\ bbb
EDIT: Thanks to evo2 and suicidaleggroll, I didn't know that one could escape an alias.
when you rm foo, you should be asked to confirm (since the alias has -i), but when you \rm bar the alias is not used.
The leading backslash bypasses any aliases the user has set up for the command. For example, I have an alias for df, so whenever I run "df" it actually runs "df -h", just so that I don't always have to type the -h. However, if I ever want to run the df without the -h, for whatever reason, I need to run "\df" so it runs the regular version without my custom alias.