When I do

vim .bashrc 

and try to edit the file it gives following error.

Can't open linked file for editing

When I do

ls -la 

it shows

.bashrc -> /home/likewise-open/company/user/dotfiles/.bashrc

When I try to cd into dotfiles, it says directory does not exist.

Please help.


It seems your .bashrc is just a link to some other place .bashrc -> /home/likewise-open/company/user/dotfiles/.bashrc.

This is not a normal attitude, so instead of using sudo or whatever you have to bring it back to its normal place.

sudo cp /home/likewise-open/company/user/dotfiles/.bashrc ~

Then now change ownership if it's not owned by you:

sudo chown your-username:your-username ~/.bashrc

Now ensure it has the correct permissions:

chmod 644 ~/.bashrc

But since you say this:

When I try to cd into dotfiles, it says directory does not exist.

This means the /home/likewise-open/company/user/dotfiles/.bashrc file is not founded and had been deleted, so for that you get the message:

Can't open linked file for editing

This means the link is point to non existing file thus a broken link.

So you get a default bashrc file from /etc/skell

cp /etc/skel/.bashrc ~/
  • Unless it has a very strange configuration, they can do it without root. ~ is their, so they can delete the link (rm .bashrc) and then copy the enterprise skeleton: cp /home/likewise-open/company/user/dotfiles/.bashrc ~, which must be readable anyway. – Rmano Jun 13 '15 at 8:00
  • @downvoter. so why downvote? – Maythux Jun 13 '15 at 9:41

If your dotfiles directory was deleted, meaning your bashrc points to a dir that does not exist try removing the destination before copying etc/skel/

cp --remove-destination /etc/skel/.bashrc ~/

You need superuser permissions to edit the file.

To become the superuser, type in sudo -s then enter your password. After you log in, then try your command, and it will work.

  • I tried sudo -s vim .bashrc and entered password still it did not work – ashishjmeshram Jun 13 '15 at 4:51
  • Try echo "my edit" | sudo tee -a /etc/bash.bashrc – Mayur Kulkarni Jun 13 '15 at 5:01
  • -1, why should he need sudo to edit ~/.bashrc? ~/.bashrc is by default owned by the user. – kos Jun 13 '15 at 5:23
  • sudo chmod og=rw bash.bashrc can change the owner of bashrc , assuming that the OP might've accidentally executed this , its just a matter of simplicity to execute the command as root – Mayur Kulkarni Jun 13 '15 at 6:55

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