Skip site navigation (1)Skip section navigation (2)

FreeBSD Man Pages

Man Page or Keyword Search:
Man Architecture
Apropos Keyword Search (all sections) Output format
home | help
CHMOD(2)                  FreeBSD System Calls Manual                 CHMOD(2)

     chmod, fchmod, lchmod - change mode of file

     Standard C Library (libc, -lc)

     #include <sys/stat.h>

     chmod(const char *path, mode_t mode);

     fchmod(int fd, mode_t mode);

     lchmod(const char *path, mode_t mode);

     The file permission bits of the file named specified by path or
     referenced by the file descriptor fd are changed to mode.  The chmod()
     system call verifies that the process owner (user) either owns the file
     specified by path (or fd), or is the super-user.  The chmod() system call
     follows symbolic links to operate on the target of the link rather than
     the link itself.

     The lchmod() system call is similar to chmod() but does not follow
     symbolic links.

     A mode is created from or'd permission bit masks defined in <sys/stat.h>:

           #define S_IRWXU 0000700    /* RWX mask for owner */
           #define S_IRUSR 0000400    /* R for owner */
           #define S_IWUSR 0000200    /* W for owner */
           #define S_IXUSR 0000100    /* X for owner */

           #define S_IRWXG 0000070    /* RWX mask for group */
           #define S_IRGRP 0000040    /* R for group */
           #define S_IWGRP 0000020    /* W for group */
           #define S_IXGRP 0000010    /* X for group */

           #define S_IRWXO 0000007    /* RWX mask for other */
           #define S_IROTH 0000004    /* R for other */
           #define S_IWOTH 0000002    /* W for other */
           #define S_IXOTH 0000001    /* X for other */

           #define S_ISUID 0004000    /* set user id on execution */
           #define S_ISGID 0002000    /* set group id on execution */
           #define S_ISVTX 0001000    /* sticky bit */
           #ifndef _POSIX_SOURCE
           #define S_ISTXT 0001000

     The FreeBSD VM system totally ignores the sticky bit (ISVTX) for
     executables.  On UFS-based file systems (FFS, LFS) the sticky bit may
     only be set upon directories.

     If mode ISVTX (the `sticky bit') is set on a directory, an unprivileged
     user may not delete or rename files of other users in that directory.
     The sticky bit may be set by any user on a directory which the user owns
     or has appropriate permissions.  For more details of the properties of
     the sticky bit, see sticky(8).

     If mode ISUID (set UID) is set on a directory, and the MNT_SUIDDIR option
     was used in the mount of the file system, then the owner of any new files
     and sub-directories created within this directory are set to be the same
     as the owner of that directory.  If this function is enabled, new
     directories will inherit the bit from their parents.  Execute bits are
     removed from the file, and it will not be given to root.  This behavior
     does not change the requirements for the user to be allowed to write the
     file, but only the eventual owner after it has been created.  Group
     inheritance is not affected.

     This feature is designed for use on fileservers serving PC users via ftp,
     SAMBA, or netatalk.  It provides security holes for shell users and as
     such should not be used on shell machines, especially on home
     directories.  This option requires the SUIDDIR option in the kernel to
     work.  Only UFS file systems support this option.  For more details of
     the suiddir mount option, see mount(8).

     Writing or changing the owner of a file turns off the set-user-id and
     set-group-id bits unless the user is the super-user.  This makes the
     system somewhat more secure by protecting set-user-id (set-group-id)
     files from remaining set-user-id (set-group-id) if they are modified, at
     the expense of a degree of compatibility.

     Upon successful completion, the value 0 is returned; otherwise the
     value -1 is returned and the global variable errno is set to indicate the

     The chmod() system call will fail and the file mode will be unchanged if:

     [ENOTDIR]          A component of the path prefix is not a directory.

     [ENAMETOOLONG]     A component of a pathname exceeded 255 characters, or
                        an entire path name exceeded 1023 characters.

     [ENOENT]           The named file does not exist.

     [EACCES]           Search permission is denied for a component of the
                        path prefix.

     [ELOOP]            Too many symbolic links were encountered in
                        translating the pathname.

     [EPERM]            The effective user ID does not match the owner of the
                        file and the effective user ID is not the super-user.

     [EROFS]            The named file resides on a read-only file system.

     [EFAULT]           The path argument points outside the process's
                        allocated address space.

     [EIO]              An I/O error occurred while reading from or writing to
                        the file system.

     [EFTYPE]           An attempt was made to set the sticky bit upon an

     The fchmod() system call will fail if:

     [EBADF]            The descriptor is not valid.

     [EINVAL]           The fd argument refers to a socket, not to a file.

     [EROFS]            The file resides on a read-only file system.

     [EIO]              An I/O error occurred while reading from or writing to
                        the file system.

     chmod(1), chown(2), open(2), stat(2), sticky(8)

     The chmod() system call is expected to conform to IEEE Std 1003.1-1990
     (``POSIX.1''), except for the return of EFTYPE and the use of S_ISTXT.

     The chmod() function appeared in Version 7 AT&T UNIX.  The fchmod()
     system call appeared in 4.2BSD.  The lchmod() system call appeared in
     FreeBSD 3.0.

FreeBSD 11.0-PRERELEASE          June 4, 1993          FreeBSD 11.0-PRERELEASE


Want to link to this manual page? Use this URL:

home | help