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FTOK(3)                    Library Functions Manual                    FTOK(3)



NAME
       ftok - standard interprocess communication package

SYNOPSIS
       #include <&lt;sys/types.h>&gt;
       #include <&lt;sys/ipc.h>&gt;

       key_t ftok(path, id)
       char *path;
       char id;

DESCRIPTION
       All  interprocess communication facilities require the user to supply a
       key to be used by the msgget(2), semget(2), and shmget(2) system  calls
       to obtain interprocess communication identifiers.  One suggested method
       for forming a key is to use  the  ftok()  subroutine  described  below.
       Another  way  to  compose keys is to include the project ID in the most
       significant byte and to use the remaining portion as a sequence number.
       There  are  many  other ways to form keys, but it is necessary for each
       system to define standards for forming them.  If some standard  is  not
       adhered to, it will be possible for unrelated processes to unintention-
       ally interfere with each other's operation.  Therefore, it is  strongly
       suggested  that  the most significant byte of a key in some sense refer
       to a project so that keys do not conflict across a given system.

       ftok() returns a key based on path and ID that is usable in  subsequent
       msgget,  semget, and shmget() system calls.  path must be the path name
       of an existing file that is accessible to the process.  ID is a charac-
       ter  which uniquely identifies a project.  Note: ftok() will return the
       same key for linked files when called with the same ID and that it will
       return different keys when called with the same file name but different
       IDs.

SEE ALSO
       intro(2), msgget(2), semget(2), shmget(2)

DIAGNOSTICS
       ftok() returns (key_t) -1 if path does not exist or if it is not acces-
       sible to the process.

WARNING
       If  the  file whose path is passed to ftok() is removed when keys still
       refer to the file, future calls to ftok() with the  same  path  and  ID
       will  return  an  error.  If the same file is recreated, then ftok() is
       likely to return a different key than it did the original time  it  was
       called.



                                6 October 1987                         FTOK(3)