symlink in -R src_dirlist and real dirs on target

Kevin Korb kmk at
Mon Dec 2 13:37:52 MST 2013

Hash: SHA1

Hmmm, I am not sure this is possible.  If you specify a source that no
longer exists rsync will error.  If you don't specify the source then
rsync will not apply --delete to it on the target.  You could always
leave it as an empty directory and rsync would empty it on the target.

Maybe someone else has a creative idea.

On 12/02/13 15:26, - wrote:
> ok. thats straight through, but in my case i would like to delete 
> dest/dir3 because it does not exist anymore in the source dir-tree.
> Do you have any idea? I could use
> parrentdir/ instead of parrentdir/./dir1/ and parrentdir/./dir2/
> as source but then I have the symlink problem you solved by adding
> the slash after the symlinks.
> Thanks
> On Mon, Dec 2, 2013 at 9:18 PM, Kevin Korb <kmk at 
> <mailto:kmk at>> wrote:
> It would not.  Rsync only operates on the sources you tell it to.
> If the source is no longer specified then --delete would not
> operate on it in the target.  This is why it is not recommended to
> use /path/to/source/* as the source as that will be expanded to
> multiple sources.
> On 12/02/13 15:15, - wrote:
>> Hi Kevin,
>> thanks. I'll try this again. I did before but got the impression 
>> that on subsequent runs, rsync would not recursivly run through 
>> dir1 and dir2. I hope I just was very tired ;-)
>> another topic: Do you have an idea if rsync could delete "dir3"
>> if dest/ consists of dir1 dir2 dir3 and I use
>> rsync -RaH --stats --delete --progress --itemize-changes dir1/ 
>> dir2/ dest/
>> Thanks
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