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OPEN(2)				 System	calls			       OPEN(2)

NAME
       open, creat - open and possibly create a	file or	device

SYNOPSIS
       #include	<sys/types.h>
       #include	<sys/stat.h>
       #include	<fcntl.h>

       int open(const char *pathname, int flags);
       int open(const char *pathname, int flags, mode_t	mode);
       int creat(const char *pathname, mode_t mode);

DESCRIPTION
       The  open()  system  call is used to convert a pathname into a file de-
       scriptor	(a small, non-negative integer for use in  subsequent  I/O  as
       with  read,  write,  etc.).   When the call is successful, the file de-
       scriptor	returned will be the lowest file descriptor not	currently open
       for  the	 process.   This call creates a	new open file, not shared with
       any other process.  (But	shared open files may arise  via  the  fork(2)
       system  call.)	The  new  file descriptor is set to remain open	across
       exec functions (see fcntl(2)).  The file	offset is set to the beginning
       of the file.

       The  parameter  flags  is one of	O_RDONLY, O_WRONLY or O_RDWR which re-
       quest opening the file read-only,  write-only  or  read/write,  respec-
       tively, bitwise-or'd with zero or more of the following:

       O_CREAT
	      If  the file does	not exist it will be created.  The owner (user
	      ID) of the file is set to	the effective user ID of the  process.
	      The  group  ownership  (group ID)	is set either to the effective
	      group ID of the process or to the	group ID of the	parent	direc-
	      tory  (depending	on  filesystem type and	mount options, and the
	      mode of the parent directory, see, e.g., the mount options  bsd-
	      groups  and  sysvgroups  of the ext2 filesystem, as described in
	      mount(8)).

       O_EXCL When used	with O_CREAT, if the file already exists it is an  er-
	      ror and the open will fail. In this context, a symbolic link ex-
	      ists, regardless of where	its points to.	O_EXCL	is  broken  on
	      NFS file systems,	programs which rely on it for performing lock-
	      ing tasks	will contain a race condition.	The solution for  per-
	      forming  atomic  file  locking  using  a lockfile	is to create a
	      unique file on the same fs  (e.g.,  incorporating	 hostname  and
	      pid),  use link(2) to make a link	to the lockfile. If link() re-
	      turns 0, the lock	is successful.	Otherwise, use stat(2) on  the
	      unique  file  to	check if its link count	has increased to 2, in
	      which case the lock is also successful.

       O_NOCTTY
	      If pathname refers to a terminal device -- see tty(4) -- it will
	      not  become  the	process's  controlling	terminal  even	if the
	      process does not have one.

       O_TRUNC
	      If the file already exists and is	a regular file	and  the  open
	      mode  allows  writing  (i.e.,  is	O_RDWR or O_WRONLY) it will be
	      truncated	to length 0.  If the file is a FIFO or terminal	device
	      file,  the  O_TRUNC  flag	 is  ignored.  Otherwise the effect of
	      O_TRUNC is unspecified.  (On many	Linux versions it will be  ig-
	      nored; on	other versions it will return an error.)

       O_APPEND
	      The  file	 is opened in append mode. Before each write, the file
	      pointer is positioned at the end of the file, as if with	lseek.
	      O_APPEND may lead	to corrupted files on NFS file systems if more
	      than one process appends data to a file at once.	 This  is  be-
	      cause  NFS  does	not support appending to a file, so the	client
	      kernel has to simulate it, which can't be	done  without  a  race
	      condition.

       O_NONBLOCK or O_NDELAY
	      When  possible, the file is opened in non-blocking mode. Neither
	      the open nor any subsequent operations on	 the  file  descriptor
	      which  is	 returned will cause the calling process to wait.  For
	      the handling of FIFOs (named pipes),  see	 also  fifo(4).	  This
	      mode need	not have any effect on files other than	FIFOs.

       O_SYNC The  file	 is  opened for	synchronous I/O. Any writes on the re-
	      sulting file descriptor will block the calling process until the
	      data  has	 been  physically  written to the underlying hardware.
	      See RESTRICTIONS below, though.

       O_NOFOLLOW
	      If pathname is a symbolic	link, then the open fails.  This is  a
	      FreeBSD  extension, which	was added to Linux in version 2.1.126.
	      Symbolic links in	earlier	components of the pathname will	 still
	      be followed.  The	headers	from glibc 2.0.100 and later include a
	      definition of this flag; kernels before 2.1.126 will  ignore  it
	      if used.

       O_DIRECTORY
	      If  pathname  is	not a directory, cause the open	to fail.  This
	      flag is Linux-specific, and was added in kernel version 2.1.126,
	      to avoid denial-of-service problems if opendir(3)	is called on a
	      FIFO or tape device, but should not be used outside of  the  im-
	      plementation of opendir.

       O_DIRECT
	      Try  to minimize cache effects of	the I/O	to and from this file.
	      In general this will degrade performance,	but it	is  useful  in
	      special  situations,  such  as  when  applications  do their own
	      caching.	File I/O is done directly to/from user space  buffers.
	      The  I/O	is synchronous,	i.e., at the completion	of the read(2)
	      or write(2) system call, data is guaranteed to have been	trans-
	      ferred.	Transfer  sizes,  and the alignment of user buffer and
	      file offset must all be multiples	of the logical block  size  of
	      the file system.
	      This flag	is supported on	a number of Unix-like systems; support
	      was added	under Linux in kernel version 2.4.10.
	      A	semantically similar interface for block devices is  described
	      in raw(8).

       O_ASYNC
	      Generate a signal	(SIGIO by default, but this can	be changed via
	      fcntl(2))	when input or output becomes possible on this file de-
	      scriptor.	 This feature is only available	for terminals, pseudo-
	      terminals, and sockets. See fcntl(2) for further details.

       O_LARGEFILE
	      On 32-bit	systems	that support the  Large	 Files	System,	 allow
	      files whose sizes	cannot be represented in 31 bits to be opened.

       Some  of	these optional flags can be altered using fcntl	after the file
       has been	opened.

       The argument mode specifies the permissions to use in case a  new  file
       is created. It is modified by the process's umask in the	usual way: the
       permissions of the created file are (mode & ~umask).   Note  that  this
       mode  only  applies  to	future accesses	of the newly created file; the
       open call that creates a	read-only file may well	 return	 a  read/write
       file descriptor.

       The following symbolic constants	are provided for mode:

       S_IRWXU
	      00700 user (file owner) has read,	write and execute permission

       S_IRUSR (S_IREAD)
	      00400 user has read permission

       S_IWUSR (S_IWRITE)
	      00200 user has write permission

       S_IXUSR (S_IEXEC)
	      00100 user has execute permission

       S_IRWXG
	      00070 group has read, write and execute permission

       S_IRGRP
	      00040 group has read permission

       S_IWGRP
	      00020 group has write permission

       S_IXGRP
	      00010 group has execute permission

       S_IRWXO
	      00007 others have	read, write and	execute	permission

       S_IROTH
	      00004 others have	read permission

       S_IWOTH
	      00002 others have	write permisson

       S_IXOTH
	      00001 others have	execute	permission

       mode  must  be  specified  when O_CREAT is in the flags,	and is ignored
       otherwise.

       creat	is    equivalent    to	  open	  with	  flags	   equal    to
       O_CREAT|O_WRONLY|O_TRUNC.

RETURN VALUE
       open  and  creat	 return	the new	file descriptor, or -1 if an error oc-
       curred (in which	case, errno is set appropriately).  Note that open can
       open  device special files, but creat cannot create them	- use mknod(2)
       instead.

       On NFS file systems with	UID mapping enabled, open may  return  a  file
       descriptor  but	e.g. read(2) requests are denied with EACCES.  This is
       because the client performs open	by checking the	permissions,  but  UID
       mapping is performed by the server upon read and	write requests.

       If the file is newly created, its atime,	ctime, mtime fields are	set to
       the current time, and so	are the	ctime and mtime	fields of  the	parent
       directory.   Otherwise,	if the file is modified	because	of the O_TRUNC
       flag, its ctime and mtime fields	are set	to the current time.

ERRORS
       EEXIST pathname already exists and O_CREAT and O_EXCL were used.

       EISDIR pathname refers to a directory and the access requested involved
	      writing (that is,	O_WRONLY or O_RDWR is set).

       EACCES The  requested  access to	the file is not	allowed, or one	of the
	      directories in pathname did not allow search  (execute)  permis-
	      sion, or the file	did not	exist yet and write access to the par-
	      ent directory is not allowed.

       ENAMETOOLONG
	      pathname was too long.

       ENOENT O_CREAT is not set and the named file does not exist.  Or, a di-
	      rectory  component  in  pathname does not	exist or is a dangling
	      symbolic link.

       ENOTDIR
	      A	component used as a directory in pathname is not, in  fact,  a
	      directory,  or  O_DIRECTORY was specified	and pathname was not a
	      directory.

       ENXIO  O_NONBLOCK | O_WRONLY is set, the	named file is a	 FIFO  and  no
	      process has the file open	for reading.  Or, the file is a	device
	      special file and no corresponding	device exists.

       ENODEV pathname refers to a device special file	and  no	 corresponding
	      device  exists.  (This is	a Linux	kernel bug - in	this situation
	      ENXIO must be returned.)

       EROFS  pathname refers to a file	on a read-only	filesystem  and	 write
	      access was requested.

       ETXTBSY
	      pathname	refers to an executable	image which is currently being
	      executed and write access	was requested.

       EFAULT pathname points outside your accessible address space.

       ELOOP  Too many symbolic	links were encountered in resolving  pathname,
	      or O_NOFOLLOW was	specified but pathname was a symbolic link.

       ENOSPC pathname	was  to	 be created but	the device containing pathname
	      has no room for the new file.

       ENOMEM Insufficient kernel memory was available.

       EMFILE The process already has the maximum number of files open.

       ENFILE The limit	on the total number of files open on  the  system  has
	      been reached.

CONFORMING TO
       SVr4, SVID, POSIX, X/OPEN, BSD 4.3 The O_NOFOLLOW and O_DIRECTORY flags
       are Linux-specific.  One	may have to define the	_GNU_SOURCE  macro  to
       get their definitions.

RESTRICTIONS
       There  are  many	infelicities in	the protocol underlying	NFS, affecting
       amongst others O_SYNC and O_NDELAY.

       POSIX provides for three	different variants of synchronised I/O,	corre-
       sponding	to the flags O_SYNC, O_DSYNC and O_RSYNC.  Currently (2.1.130)
       these are all synonymous	under Linux.

SEE ALSO
       read(2),	write(2), fcntl(2),  close(2),	link(2),  mknod(2),  mount(2),
       stat(2),	umask(2), unlink(2), socket(2),	fopen(3), fifo(4)

Linux				  1999-06-03			       OPEN(2)

NAME | SYNOPSIS | DESCRIPTION | RETURN VALUE | ERRORS | CONFORMING TO | RESTRICTIONS | SEE ALSO

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