_unlink, _wunlink
Collapse the table of content
Expand the table of content
Important This document may not represent best practices for current development, links to downloads and other resources may no longer be valid. Current recommended version can be found here. ArchiveDisclaimer

_unlink, _wunlink

Delete a file.

int _unlink(
   const char *filename 
int _wunlink(
   const wchar_t *filename 


Name of file to remove.

Return Value

Each of these functions returns 0 if successful. Otherwise, the function returns –1 and sets errno to EACCES, which means the path specifies a read-only file, or to ENOENT, which means the file or path is not found or the path specified a directory.

See _doserrno, errno, _sys_errlist, and _sys_nerr for more information on these, and other, return codes.


The _unlink function deletes the file specified by filename. _wunlink is a wide-character version of _unlink; the filename argument to _wunlink is a wide-character string. These functions behave identically otherwise.

Generic-Text Routine Mappings

TCHAR.H routine _UNICODE & _MBCS not defined _MBCS defined _UNICODE defined
_tunlink _unlink _unlink _wunlink


Routine Required header Compatibility
_unlink <io.h> and <stdio.h> Win 98, Win Me, Win NT, Win 2000, Win XP
_wunlink <io.h> or <wchar.h> Win NT, Win 2000, Win XP

For additional compatibility information, see Compatibility in the Introduction.


All versions of the C run-time libraries.


This program uses _unlink to delete CRT_UNLINK.TXT.

// crt_unlink.c

#include <stdio.h>

int main( void )
   if( _unlink( "crt_unlink.txt" ) == -1 )
      perror( "Could not delete 'CRT_UNLINK.TXT'" );
      printf( "Deleted 'CRT_UNLINK.TXT'\n" );

Input: crt_unlink.txt

This file will be deleted.



See Also

File Handling Routines | _close | remove | Run-Time Routines and .NET Framework Equivalents

© 2016 Microsoft