ftok man page

ftok — convert a pathname and a project identifier to a System V IPC key

Synopsis

#include <sys/types.h>
#include <sys/ipc.h>

key_t ftok(const char *pathname, int proj_id);

Description

The ftok() function uses the identity of the file named by the given pathname (which must refer to an existing, accessible file) and the least significant 8 bits of proj_id (which must be nonzero) to generate a key_t type System V IPC key, suitable for use with msgget(2), semget(2), or shmget(2).

The resulting value is the same for all pathnames that name the same file, when the same value of proj_id is used. The value returned should be different when the (simultaneously existing) files or the project IDs differ.

Return Value

On success, the generated key_t value is returned. On failure -1 is returned, with errno indicating the error as for the stat(2) system call.

Attributes

For an explanation of the terms used in this section, see attributes(7).

Interface Attribute Value
ftok() Thread safety MT-Safe

Conforming to

POSIX.1-2001, POSIX.1-2008.

Notes

On some ancient systems, the prototype was:

key_t ftok(char *pathname, char proj_id);

Today, proj_id is an int, but still only 8 bits are used. Typical usage has an ASCII character proj_id, that is why the behavior is said to be undefined when proj_id is zero.

Of course, no guarantee can be given that the resulting key_t is unique. Typically, a best-effort attempt combines the given proj_id byte, the lower 16 bits of the inode number, and the lower 8 bits of the device number into a 32-bit result. Collisions may easily happen, for example between files on /dev/hda1 and files on /dev/sda1.

See Also

msgget(2), semget(2), shmget(2), stat(2), svipc(7)

Colophon

This page is part of release 4.10 of the Linux man-pages project. A description of the project, information about reporting bugs, and the latest version of this page, can be found at https://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/.

Referenced By

ipcrm(1), migratepages(8), msgget(2), numactl(8), semget(2), shmget(2), svipc(7).

2015-08-08 GNU Linux Programmer's Manual