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

FreeBSD Manual Pages


home | help
introduction(9)		   Kernel Developer's Manual	       introduction(9)

       Introduction  -	an  introduction to the	HP-UX operating	system and the
       HP-UX Reference

       HP-UX is	the Hewlett-Packard Company's implementation of	 an  operating
       system that is compatible with various industry standards.  It is based
       on the UNIX(R) System V Release 4 operating system and includes	impor-
       tant features from the Fourth Berkeley Software Distribution.

       Improvements  include  enhanced capabilities and	other features,	devel-
       oped by HP to make HP-UX	a very powerful, useful, and reliable  operat-
       ing  system, capable of supporting a wide range of applications ranging
       from simple text	processing to sophisticated engineering	 graphics  and
       design.	 It  can  readily be used to control instruments and other pe-
       ripheral	devices.  Real-time capabilities further expand	the  flexibil-
       ity  of	HP-UX as a powerful tool for solving tough problems in design,
       manufacturing, business,	and other areas	where responsiveness and  per-
       formance	are important.

       Extensive international language	support	enables	HP-UX to interact with
       users in	any of dozens of human	languages.   HP-UX  interfaces	easily
       with local area networks	and resource-sharing facilities.  By using in-
       dustry-standard protocols, HP-UX	 provides  flexible  interaction  with
       other  computers	and operating systems.	Optional software products ex-
       tend HP-UX capabilities into a broad range of specialized needs.

       The is not a learning tool for beginners.  It is	primarily a  reference
       tool  that  is  most  useful for	experienced users of UNIX or UNIX-like
       systems.	 If you	are not	already	familiar with UNIX or HP-UX, refer  to
       the  series  of Beginner's Guides, tutorial manuals, and	other learning
       documents supplied with your system or  available  separately.	System
       implementation and maintenance details are explained in the manual.

       The  contents  of the and its on-line counterpart are a number of inde-
       pendent entries called These are	also called manual entries  or	refer-
       ence pages.

       For  convenient reference, the manpages are divided into	eight special-
       ized sections.  The printed manual also has a  table  of	 contents  for
       each volume and a composite index.

       Each  manpage  consists	of one or more printed pages, with the manpage
       name and	section	number printed in the upper corners.  Manpages are ar-
       ranged  alphabetically within each section of the reference, except for
       the intro page at the beginning of each section.	 Manpages are referred
       to by name and section number, in the form pagename(section).

       The  manpages are available on-line through the command if the manpages
       are present on the system.  Refer to the	man(1) manpage	in  Section  1
       for more	information.

       Each  page  in  the printed manual has two page numbers,	printed	at the
       bottom of the page.  The	center page number starts over with page 1  at
       the  beginning  of each new manpage; it is placed between two dashes in
       normal typeface.	 The number printed at the outside corner on each page
       sequences  the  printed	pages  within a	section.  Users	usually	locate
       manpages	by the alphabetic headings at the top  of  the	page  as  when
       reading a dictionary.

       Some  manpages  describe	 two  or  more	commands or routines.  In such
       cases, the manpage is usually named for the first command  or  function
       that appears in the NAME	section.  Occasionally,	a manpage name appears
       as a prefix to the NAME section.	 In such instances, the	name describes
       the  commands  or  functions  in	 more general terms.  For example, the
       acct(1M)	manpage	describes the and commands, while the string(3C)  man-
       page describes many character string functions.

       The various sections are	described as follows:

       Volume Table of Contents	(Printed Manual)

	      A	 complete  listing of all manpages in the order	they appear in
	      each section, as well as alphabetically intermixed lists of  all
	      command, function, and feature names that	are the	different from
	      the manpage where	they appear

       Section 1: User Commands

	      Programs that are	usually	invoked	directly by users or from com-
	      mand language procedures (scripts).

       Section 1M: System Administration Commands

	      Commands used for	system installation and	maintenance, including
	      boot processes, crash recovery, system  integrity	 testing,  and
	      other  needs.   Most  commands in	this section require the supe-
	      ruser privilege.

       Section 2: System Calls

	      Entries into the HP-UX kernel, including the  C-language	inter-
	      face.  These topics are primarily	of interest to programmers.

       Section 3: Library Functions

	      Available	 subroutines  that  reside (in binary form) in various
	      system libraries.	 These topics are  primarily  of  interest  to

       Section 4: File Formats

	      The  structure  of various types of files, primarily of interest
	      to administrators	and programmers.  For example, the link	editor
	      output  file  format  is	described in a.out(4).	Files that are
	      used only	by a single command (such as intermediate  files  used
	      by  assemblers) are not described.  C-language declarations cor-
	      responding to the	formats	in Section 4 can be found in  the  di-
	      rectories	and

       Section 5: Miscellaneous

	      A	 variety of information, such as descriptions of header	files,
	      character	sets, macro packages, and other	topics.

       Section 7: Device Special Files

	      The characteristics of special (device) files that  provide  the
	      link  between  HP-UX and system I/O devices.  The	names for each
	      topic usually refer to the type of I/O device rather than	to the
	      names of individual special files.

       Section 9: Introduction and Glossary

	      A	 general introduction (this one) and definitions of terms used
	      in the HP-UX environment.

       Composite Index (Printed	Manual)

	      An alphabetical listing of keywords and topics based on the NAME
	      section  near the	beginning of each manpage as well as other in-
	      formation, cross-referenced to manpage names and sections.   The
	      index also contains references to	built-in features in the vari-
	      ous command interpreters ("shells").

       All manpages follow an established section heading format, but not  all
       section	headings  are  included	 in each manpage.  A few manpages have
       self-explanatory	specialized headings.

       NAME   Gives the	names of the  commands,	 functions,  or	 features  and
	      briefly states the purpose.

	      Summarizes  the  syntax of the command or	program	entity.	 A few
	      conventions are used:

	      characters indicate literal characters that  should  be  entered
	      exactly  as they appear.	These characters appear	in bold	in the
	      online manpages.

	      Italic strings represent variable	elements that  should  be  re-
	      placed with appropriate values.

	      Roman  square  brackets  ([]) indicate that the contents are op-

	      Roman braces ({})	indicate a  required  element,	usually	 in  a

	      Ellipses	(...)  indicate	 that  the previous element can	be re-

	      Note: An argument	beginning with a dash a	plus sign or an	 equal
	      sign is often defined as a command option, even if it appears in
	      a	position where a file name could appear.  Therefore, it	is un-
	      wise to have files names that begin with or

	      Discusses	the function and behavior of each entry.

	      Information under	this heading pertains to programming for vari-
	      ous spoken languages.  Typical entries indicate support for sin-
	      gle- or multibyte	characters, the	effect of language-related en-
	      vironment	variables on system behavior, and other	related	infor-

	      Information under	this heading is	applicable only	if you are us-
	      ing the network feature described	there (such as NFS).

	      Describes	the values returned by function	calls or in the	return
	      code by commands.

	      Describes	diagnostic information that may	be produced.  Self-ex-
	      planatory	messages are not listed.

       ERRORS Lists function error conditions (set in and their	 corresponding
	      error messages.

	      Provides examples	of typical usage.

	      Describes	potential problems and deficiencies.

	      Describes	 variations in HP-UX operation that are	related	to the
	      use of specific hardware or combinations of hardware.

       AUTHOR Indicates	the origin of the software documented by the  manpage.
	      Unless noted otherwise, the source of an entry is	System V.

       FILES  Lists  file  names  that	are used or affected by	the program or

       SEE ALSO
	      Provides pointers	to related manpages and	other documentation.

	      For each command or subroutine entry point addressed by  one  or
	      more of the following industry standards,	this section lists the
	      standard specifications to which that HP-UX component conforms.

	      The various standards are:

	      AES	  OSF Application Environment Specification

	      ANSI C	  ANSI X3.159-1989

	      POSIX.1	  IEEE Standard	1003.1-1988  (IEEE  Computer  Society)
			  (Portable  Operating	System	Interface for Computer

	      POSIX.2	  IEEE Standard	1003.2-1990  (IEEE  Computer  Society)
			  (Portable  Operating	System	Interface for Computer

	      POSIX.4	  IEEE Standard	1003.1b-1993 (IEEE  Computer  Society)
			  (Portable  Operating	System	Interface for Computer

	      FIPS 151-1  Federal Information Processing Standard  151-1  (Na-
			  tional Institute of Standards	and Technology)

	      FIPS 151-2  Federal  Information	Processing Standard 151-2 (Na-
			  tional Institute of Standards	and Technology)

	      SVID2	  System V Interface Definition	Issue 2

	      SVID3	  System V Interface Definition	Issue 3

	      XPG2	  X/Open Portability Guide Issue 2 (X/Open, Ltd.)

	      XPG3	  X/Open Portability Guide Issue 3 (X/Open, Ltd.)

	      XPG4	  X/Open Portability Guide Issue 4 (X/Open, Ltd.)

	      XPG4.2	  X/Open Portability Guide Issue 4 (X/Open, Ltd.) Ver-
			  sion 2

       This  is	 a  very brief overview	of how to use the HP-UX	system:	how to
       log in and log out, how to communicate through your machine, and	how to
       run a program.

       HP-UX  uses  control  characters	to perform certain functions.  Control
       characters are generally	shown in the form such as for Control-D.  Hold
       down the	(key while you press the character key.

   Logging In
       To  log	in  you	must have a valid user name and	password, which	can be
       obtained	from your system administrator.

       When a connection has been established, the  system  displays  on  your
       terminal.   Type	your user name and press the key.  Enter your password
       (it is not echoed by the	system)	and press

       A list of copyright notices and a message-of-the-day may	greet you  be-
       fore the	first prompt.

       It  is  important that you type your login name with lowercase letters,
       if possible.  If	you type uppercase letters, HP-UX  assumes  that  your
       terminal	 cannot	 generate lowercase letters, and treats	subsequent up-
       percase input as	lowercase.

       When you	log in successfully, the system	starts your login shell.   The
       default	is the POSIX shell, The	POSIX shell (and its predecessors, the
       Korn and	Bourne shells) use as the default prompt.  The C shell uses

       See login(1) for	more on	login,	passwd(1)  to  change  your  password,
       chsh(1) to change your login shell.

   Logging Out
       You can log out of the shells by	typing an command or the (end-of-file)
       character (see the subsection below).  The  shell  terminates  and  the
       prompt  appears again.  (If you are using the C,	Korn, or POSIX shells,
       respectively, see csh(1), ksh(1), or sh-posix(1)	for information	 about
       the special command.)

   How to Communicate Through Your Terminal
       HP-UX  gathers  keyboard	 input	characters and saves them in a buffer.
       The accumulated characters are not passed to the	shell or other program
       until you type

       HP-UX  terminal	input/output  is full-duplex.  It has full read-ahead,
       which means that	you can	type at	any time,  even	 while	a  program  is
       printing	 on  your  display or terminal.	 Of course, if you type	during
       output, the output display will have the	input characters  interspersed
       in it.  However,	whatever you type will be saved	and interpreted	in the
       correct sequence.  There	is a limit to the amount of read-ahead,	but it
       is generous and not likely to be	exceeded unless	the system is severely
       overloaded or operating abnormally.  When the read-ahead	limit  is  ex-
       ceeded, the system throws away the saved	characters.

       stty(1)	tells you how to describe the characteristics of your terminal
       to the system.  profile(4) explains how to accomplish this  task	 auto-
       matically every time you	log in.

   Special Interactive Characters
       A number	of special characters are used to control the input and	output
       of your terminal.  These	characters have	defaults and can be  redefined
       with the	command	(see stty(1)).

	      stty	      Default At Login		  Common
	      Name    Character	(ASCII Name; Key Names)	  Redefinition
	      eof     ^D (EOT)

			    erase   #					^H (BS;	Backspace)

	      kill    @					  ^U (NAK), ^X (CAN)
	      intr    ^? (DEL; Delete, Rub, Rubout)	  ^C (ETX)
	      quit    ^\ (FS)
	      start   ^Q (DC1; X-ON)
	      stop    ^S (DC3; X-OFF)

       The  character  terminates  "file"  input from the terminal, as read by
       programs	and scripts.  By extension, can	also terminate the shell  (see
       the subsection above).

       The  character deletes all characters typed before it on	a terminal in-
       put line.  The character	erases the last	character  typed.   Successive
       uses of will erase characters back to, but not beyond, the beginning of
       the input line.

       The character generates an interrupt signal  that  bypasses  the	 input
       buffer.	 This signal generally causes whatever program you are running
       to terminate.  It can be	used to	stop a long printout  that  you	 don't
       want.  However, programs	can arrange either to ignore this signal alto-
       gether, or to be	notified when it  happens  (instead  of	 being	termi-
       nated).	 For  example, the editor catches interrupts and stops what it
       is doing, instead of terminating, so that an interrupt can be  used  to
       halt an editing operation without losing	the file being edited.

       The  character  generates  a quit signal	that bypasses the input	buffer
       and most	program	traps and causes a running program to  terminate.   It
       can cause a core	dump in	the current directory.

       The  character can be used to pause output to the terminal.  It is com-
       monly used on video terminals to	suspend	output to  the	display	 while
       you  read  what is already being	displayed.  You	can then resume	output
       by typing the character.	 When and are used to suspend or  resume  out-
       put, they bypass	the keyboard command-line buffer and are not passed to
       the program.  However, any other	characters typed on the	 keyboard  are
       saved and used as input later in	the program.

       The  and	characters can be used as normal text characters if you	escape
       them with a preceding as	in Therefore, to erase a you need two

       The and characters cannot be escaped on the input line.

   End-of-Line and Tab Characters
       Besides adapting	to the speed of	the terminal, HP-UX tries to be	intel-
       ligent  as  to  whether	you have a terminal with a (key, or whether it
       must be simulated with a	return/line-feed character pair.  In the  lat-
       ter case, all incoming return characters	are changed to line-feed char-
       acters (the standard line delimiter), and a  return/line-feed  pair  is
       echoed  to  the terminal.  If you get into the wrong mode, use the com-
       mand to correct it (see stty(1)).

       Tab characters are used freely in HP-UX source programs.	 If your  ter-
       minal does not have the tab function, you can arrange to	have tab char-
       acters changed into spaces during output, and echoed as	spaces	during
       input.	The  command sets or resets this mode.	By default, the	system
       assumes that tabs are set every eight character positions.  The command
       (see  tabs(1)) can set tab stops	on your	terminal, if the terminal sup-
       ports tabs.

   How to Run a	Program
       When you	have successfully logged into HP-UX, the shell monitors	 input
       from  your  terminal.  The shell	accepts	typed lines from the terminal,
       splits them into	command	names and arguments, then  executes  the  com-
       mand.   The  command can	be the name of a shell built-in, an executable
       script of commands, or an executable program.  There is nothing special
       about  system-provided  commands, except	that they are kept in directo-
       ries where the shell can	find them.  You	can also keep commands in your
       own directories and arrange for the shell to find them there.

       The  command  name is the first word on an input	line to	the shell; the
       command and its arguments are separated from one	another	by blanks (one
       or more space and/or tab	characters).

       When  a	program	 terminates,  the shell	ordinarily regains control and
       prompts you to indicate that it is  ready  for  another	command.   The
       shell has many other capabilities, which	are described in detail	in the
       appropriate manpages: sh-posix(1) for the POSIX shell, ksh(1)  for  the
       Korn shell, or csh(1) for the C shell.

   The Current Directory
       HP-UX  has  a file system arranged in a hierarchy of directories.  When
       the system administrator	gave you a user	name, he or she	also created a
       directory for you (ordinarily with the same name	as your	user name, and
       known as	your login or home directory).	When you log in,  that	direc-
       tory  becomes  your current or working directory, and any file name you
       type is assumed to be in	that directory by default.   Because  you  are
       the  owner  of this directory, you have full permission to read,	write,
       alter, or destroy its contents.	The permissions	you have for other di-
       rectories  and  files  will have	been granted or	denied to you by their
       respective owners, or by	the system administrator.  To change the  cur-
       rent working directory use cd(1).

   Path	Names
       To  refer  to  files  not in the	current	directory, you must use	a path
       name.  Full (absolute) path names begin with which is the name  of  the
       root  directory	of  the	 whole file system.  After the slash comes the
       name of each directory containing the next subdirectory (followed by  a
       until  finally the file name is reached (for example, refers to file in
       directory while is itself a subdirectory	of is a	 subdirectory  of  the
       root directory).	 See glossary(9) for a formal definition of path name.

       If  your	 current  directory contains subdirectories, the path names of
       files in	them begin with	the name  of  the  corresponding  subdirectory
       (without	 a prefixed Generally, a path name can be used anywhere	a file
       name is required.

       Important commands that modify the  contents  of	 directories  are  and
       which respectively copy,	move (that is, rename, relocate, or both), and
       remove files.  To determine the status of files or the contents of  di-
       rectories,  use the command.  Use to make directories, to destroy them,
       and to rename them (see	cp(1),	ls(1),	mkdir(1),  mv(1),  rm(1),  and

   Writing a Program
       To  enter  the  text of a source	program	into an	HP-UX file, use	a text
       editing program such as or (see vi(1), ex(1), and  ed(1)).   The	 three
       principal  languages available under HP-UX are C	(see cc_bundled(1) and
       cc(1)), FORTRAN (see f77(1)), and Pascal	(see pc(1)).  After  the  pro-
       gram  text  has	been  entered  with the	editor and written into	a file
       (whose name has the appropriate suffix),	you can	give the name of  that
       file  to	 the appropriate language processor as an argument.  Normally,
       the output of the language processor will be left in a  file  named  in
       the  current  directory.	 Since the results of a	subsequent compilation
       may also	be placed in thus overwriting the current output, you may want
       to  use to give the output a unique name.  If the program is written in
       assembly	language, you will probably need to link  library  subroutines
       with  it	(see ld(1)).  FORTRAN, C, and Pascal call the linker automati-

       When you	have gone through this entire process without encountering any
       diagnostics, the	resulting program can be run by	giving its name	to the
       shell in	response to the	prompt.

       Your programs can receive arguments from	the command line just as  sys-
       tem  programs  do  by using the argc and	argv parameters.  See the sup-
       plied C tutorial	for details.

   Text	Processing
       Almost all text is entered through a text editor.  The editor preferred
       above all others	provided with HP-UX is the editor.  For	batch-process-
       ing text	files, the editor is very efficient.  Other editors  are  used
       much less frequently.  The editor is useful for handling	certain	situa-
       tions while using but most other	editors	are rarely used	except in var-
       ious scripts.

       The  following  editors are the same program masquerading under various
       names: and (see vi(1)) and and (see ex(1)).  For	information about  the
       stream editor, see sed(1).  The line editor is described	in ed(1).

       The commands most often used to display text on a terminal are and (see
       cat(1), more(1),	and pr(1)).  The command simply	copies ASCII  text  to
       the  terminal, with no processing at all.  The command displays text on
       the terminal a screenful	at a time, pausing for an acknowledgement from
       the user	before continuing.  The	command	paginates text,	supplies head-
       ings, and has a facility	for multicolumn	output.	 is most commonly used
       in conjunction with the command (see lp(1)) to pipe formatted text to a
       line printer.

   Interuser Communication
       Certain commands	provide	interuser communication.  Even if you  do  not
       plan  to	 use them, it could be beneficial to learn about them, because
       someone else may	direct them toward you.	 To communicate	 with  another
       user that is currently logged in, you can use to	transfer text directly
       to that user's terminal display	(if  permission	 to  do	 so  has  been
       granted	by  the	 other user).  Otherwise, or (in order of ease of use)
       can send	a message to another user's mailbox.  The  user	 is  then  in-
       formed  by HP-UX	that mail has arrived (if currently logged in) or mail
       is present (when	the user next logs in).	  Refer	 to  elm(1),  mail(1),
       mailx(1), and write(1) for explanations of how these commands are used.

       UNIX  is	 a  registered	trademark in the United	States and other coun-
       tries, licensed exclusively through X/Open Company Limited.

       cat(1), cc_bundled(1), cd(1), chsh(1),  cp(1),  csh(1),	ed(1),	ex(1),
       ksh(1),	ld(1),	login(1),  lp(1),  ls(1),  mail(1),  mailx(1), man(1),
       mkdir(1), more(1), mv(1), passwd(1), pr(1),  rm(1),  rmdir(1),  sed(1),
       sh(1),  sh-posix(1),  stty(1), tabs(1), vi(1), write(1),	a.out(4), pro-
       file(4),	glossary(9).

       Web access to HP-UX documentation at



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

home | help