Linux rmdir Command Tutorial

The Linux operating system provides the rmdir command in order to remove directories. But there is an important point where the rmdir command can only delete an empty directory. If a directory has some files it can not be deleted with the rmdir command. The rmdir name comes from Remove Directory .

Remove Empty Directory

The rmdir command can be used to delete an empty directory. The directory path or name is provided as a parameter to the rmdir command. In the following example, we remove the directory named data.

$ rmdir data

We can also delete a directory using its full path with the rmdir command. This is a better way to delete a directory because there is very little room for mistakes in the directory name and path.

$ rmdir /home/ismail/data/

Remove Non-Empty Directory

Well, we have already said that the rmdir command can only delete an empty directory but if we need to delete a non-empty directory what should we do? There is a rm command which can be used to delete non-empty directly. The directory contains some files and directories.

$ rm -rf /home/ismail/data/

Remove Multi-Level Path/Directory

The rmdir command can be used to remove multi-level directories or paths. But all of the directories should be empty. The -p option is used to delete the multi-level directory. But all directories do not have any files.

$ rmdir -p ./data/backup/test

Remove Directory Verbosely

By default, while deleting directories with the rmdir command no information about the operation is displayed. We can display information with the -v verbose option like below.

$ rmdir -v data

rmdir Version

The rmdir command version information can be displayed by using the --version option.

$ rmdir --version
rmdir Version

rmdir Help

We can also print the help information about the rmdir command by using the --help option.

$ rmdir --help
rmdir Help

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