Python Delete/Remove a File If Exists On Disk

by on January 3, 2013 · 0 comments· LAST UPDATED February 28, 2014

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How can I check if a file exists in a directory with Python and then delete/remove it using python program?

Tutorial details
DifficultyEasy (rss)
Root privilegesNo
RequirementsPython
Estimated completion time2m
You can easily check if a file exists, in a current directory using the following python syntax:

os.path.isfile(filename)

Next, you can use the following syntax to delete the file:

os.remove(filename)

Check If a File Exists and Then Delete It in Python

 
#!/usr/bin/python
import os
 
## get input ##
filename=raw_input("Type file name to remove: ")
 
## delete only if file exists ##
if os.path.exists(filename):
    os.remove(filename)
else:
    print("Sorry, I can not remove %s file." % filename)
 

Sample outputs:

Fig. 01: remove.py in action

Fig. 01: remove.py in action

A Better Option To Delete A File In Python

The following code gives an error information when it can not delete the given file name:

 
#!/usr/bin/python
import os
 
## get input ##
filename=raw_input("Type file name to remove: ")
 
## check if a file exists on disk ##
## if exists, delete it else show message on screen ##
if os.path.exists(filename):
	try:
		os.remove(filename)
	except OSError, e:
		print ("Error: %s - %s." % (e.filename,e.strerror))
else:
	print("Sorry, I can not find %s file." % filename)
 

Sample outputs:

Fig. 02: Updated remove.py to  to check if a file exists and then delete it

Fig. 02: Updated remove.py to check if a file exists and then delete it

References

See python os docs for more information.

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