LN(1)                        General Commands Manual                       LN(1)

     link, ln – make links

     ln [-Ffhinsv] source_file [link_name]
     ln [-Ffhinsv] source_file ... link_dirname
     link source_file link_name

     The ln utility creates a new directory entry (linked file) which has the
     same modes as the original file.  It is useful for maintaining multiple
     copies of a file in many places at once without using up storage for the
     “copies”; instead, a link “points” to the original copy.  There are two
     types of links; hard links and symbolic links.  How a link “points” to a
     file is one of the differences between a hard and symbolic link.

     The options are as follows:

     -F    If the proposed link (link_name) already exists and is a directory,
           then remove it so that the link may occur.  The -F option should be
           used with either -f or -i options.  If none is specified, -f is
           implied.  The -F option is a no-op unless -s option is specified.

     -h    If the link_name or link_dirname is a symbolic link, do not follow
           it.  This is most useful with the -f option, to replace a symlink
           which may point to a directory.

     -f    If the proposed link (link_name) already exists, then unlink it so
           that the link may occur.  (The -f option overrides any previous -i

     -i    Cause ln to write a prompt to standard error if the proposed link
           exists.  If the response from the standard input begins with the
           character ‘y’ or ‘Y’, then unlink the proposed link so that the link
           may occur.  Otherwise, do not attempt the link.  (The -i option
           overrides any previous -f options.)

     -n    Same as -h, for compatibility with other ln implementations.

     -s    Create a symbolic link.

     -v    Cause ln to be verbose, showing files as they are processed.

     By default, ln makes hard links.  A hard link to a file is
     indistinguishable from the original directory entry; any changes to a file
     are effectively independent of the name used to reference the file.  Hard
     links may not normally refer to directories and may not span file systems.

     A symbolic link contains the name of the file to which it is linked.  The
     referenced file is used when an open(2) operation is performed on the link.
     A stat(2) on a symbolic link will return the linked-to file; an lstat(2)
     must be done to obtain information about the link.  The readlink(2) call
     may be used to read the contents of a symbolic link.  Symbolic links may
     span file systems and may refer to directories.

     Given one or two arguments, ln creates a link to an existing file
     source_file.  If link_name is given, the link has that name; link_name may
     also be a directory in which to place the link; otherwise it is placed in
     the current directory.  If only the directory is specified, the link will
     be made to the last component of source_file.

     Given more than two arguments, ln makes links in link_dirname to all the
     named source files.  The links made will have the same name as the files
     being linked to.

     When the utility is called as link, exactly two arguments must be supplied,
     neither of which may specify a directory.  No options may be supplied in
     this simple mode of operation, which performs a link(2) operation using the
     two passed arguments.

     The -h, -i, -n and -v options are non-standard and their use in scripts is
     not recommended.  They are provided solely for compatibility with other ln

     The -F option is FreeBSD extention and should not be used in portable

     link(2), lstat(2), readlink(2), stat(2), symlink(2), symlink(7)

     The ln utility conforms to IEEE Std 1003.2-1992 (“POSIX.2”).

     The simplified link command conforms to Version 2 of the Single UNIX
     Specification (“SUSv2”).

     An ln command appeared in Version 1 AT&T UNIX.

macOS 12.1                        July 12, 2019                       macOS 12.1