Problem deleting files

Paul Schmehl paul.schmehl at
Sun Jul 1 19:13:34 UTC 2018

I have a problem with a directory full of files that I can't seem to delete.

rm * returns argument list too long. So does file *

find . -type f -exec rm [] \; returns rm: []: No such file or directory 
over and over again.

ls | wc -l shows there's files there.
ls | wc -l

And ls -l actually lists the files:
-rw-------  1 root  wheel    134 Jun  7  2015 

If I try to delete that specific filename, it seems to work. (Running rm 
twice returns no such file the second time.) Yet the file count remains the 

I also tried rm -fr | ls -l | awk '{print $9}', which returned a list of 
filenames but didn't delete any of them.

Nothing I've tried to delete these files seems to work. What can I do to 
get rid of these files?

Paul Schmehl
Independent Researcher

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