Sign up ×
Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I got a strange error the other day. Attempting to rm -rf nav/ a directory threw "not a directory", but trying to rm nav errored with "is a directory".

How is this possible?

not a directory

share|improve this question
Well, what is it, then? What's "ls -l nav" show? –  Rob F Oct 12 '09 at 16:23

1 Answer 1

You may have some filesystem corruption. Notice the 1 between the permission and the owner? That's the number of links to the directory inode. A directory should normally have a minimum of two, because it is linked to by the parent directory, and by itself (the . entry it contains). I would guess there is some corruption and your nav directory does not contain a . entry. Can you get anything with ls -la nav?

share|improve this answer
The file/directory is already gone unfortunately, so I can't ls -la nav. –  davethegr8 Oct 12 '09 at 17:04

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.