duplocale man page

duplocale — duplicate a locale object


#include <locale.h>

locale_t duplocale(locale_t locobj);

Feature Test Macro Requirements for glibc (see feature_test_macros(7)):


Since glibc 2.10:
Before glibc 2.10:


The duplocale() function creates a duplicate of the locale object referred to by locobj.

If locobj is LC_GLOBAL_LOCALE, duplocale() creates a locale object containing a copy of the global locale determined by setlocale(3).

Return Value

On success, duplocale() returns a handle for the new locale object. On error, it returns (locale_t) 0, and sets errno to indicate the cause of the error.


Insufficient memory to create the duplicate locale object.


The duplocale() function first appeared in version 2.3 of the GNU C library.

Conforming to



Duplicating a locale can serve the following purposes:

To create a copy of a locale object in which one of more categories are to be modified (using newlocale(3)).

To obtain a handle for the current locale which can used in other functions that employ a locale handle, such as toupper_l(3). This is done by applying duplocale() to the value returned by the following call:

loc = uselocale((locale_t) 0);

This technique is necessary, because the above uselocale(3) call may return the value LC_GLOBAL_LOCALE, which results in undefined behavior if passed to functions such as toupper_l(3). Calling duplocale() can be used to ensure that the LC_GLOBAL_LOCALE value is converted into a usable locale object. See Example, below.

Each locale object created by duplocale() should be deallocated using freelocale(3).


The program below uses uselocale(3) and duplocale() to obtain a handle for the current locale which is then passed to toupper_l(3). The program takes one command-line argument, a string of characters that is converted to uppercase and displayed on standard output. An example of its use is the following:

$ ./a.out abc

Program source

#define _XOPEN_SOURCE 700
#include <ctype.h>
#include <stdio.h>
#include <stdlib.h>
#include <locale.h>

#define errExit(msg)    do { perror(msg); exit(EXIT_FAILURE); \
                        } while (0)

main(int argc, char *argv[])
    locale_t loc, nloc;
    char *p;

    if (argc != 2) {
        fprintf(stderr, "Usage: %s string\n", argv[0]);

    /* This sequence is necessary, because uselocale() might return
       the value LC_GLOBAL_LOCALE, which can't be passed as an
       argument to toupper_l() */

    loc = uselocale((locale_t) 0);
    if (loc == (locale_t) 0)

    nloc = duplocale(loc);
    if (nloc == (locale_t) 0)

    for (p = argv[1]; *p; p++)
        putchar(toupper_l(*p, nloc));




See Also

freelocale(3), newlocale(3), setlocale(3), uselocale(3), locale(5), locale(7)

Referenced By

isalpha(3), locale(7), newlocale(3), strfmon(3), toupper(3), towlower(3), towupper(3), uselocale(3).

Explore man page connections for duplocale(3).