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RocketLink!--> Man page versions: OpenBSD FreeBSD Others

DIRECTORY(3)              OpenBSD Programmer's Manual             DIRECTORY(3)

     opendir, readdir, telldir, seekdir, rewinddir, closedir, dirfd - directo-
     ry operations

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

     DIR *
     opendir(const char *filename);

     struct dirent *
     readdir(DIR *dirp);

     telldir(const DIR *dirp);

     seekdir(DIR *dirp, long loc);

     rewinddir(DIR *dirp);

     closedir(DIR *dirp);

     dirfd(DIR *dirp);

     The opendir() function opens the directory named by filename, associates
     a directory stream with it and returns a pointer to be used to identify
     the directory stream in subsequent operations.  A null pointer is re-
     turned if filename cannot be accessed, or if malloc(3) cannot allocate
     enough memory to hold the entire structure.

     The readdir() function returns a pointer to the next directory entry in
     the named directory stream dirp. It returns NULL upon reaching the end of
     the directory or detecting an invalid seekdir() operation.

     The telldir() function returns the current location associated with the
     named directory stream dirp.

     The seekdir() function sets the position of the next readdir() operation
     on the named directory stream dirp. The new position reverts to the one
     associated with the directory stream when the telldir() operation was
     performed.  Values returned by telldir() are good only for the lifetime
     of the DIR pointer, dirp, from which they are derived.  If the directory
     is closed and then reopened, the telldir() value may be invalidated due
     to undetected directory compaction.  It is safe to use a previous
     telldir() value immediately after a call to opendir() and before any
     calls to readdir().

     The rewinddir() function resets the position of the named directory
     stream dirp to the beginning of the directory.

     The closedir() function closes the named directory stream and frees the
     structure associated with the dirp pointer, returning 0 on success.  On
     failure, -1 is returned and the global variable errno is set to indicate
     the error.

     The dirfd() function returns the integer file descriptor associated with
     the named directory stream dirp (see open(2)).

     Sample code which searches a directory for entry ``name'' is:

           len = strlen(name);
           dirp = opendir(".");
           if (dirp) {
                   while ((dp = readdir(dirp)) != NULL)
                           if (dp->d_namlen == len && !strcmp(dp->d_name, name)) {
                                   return FOUND;
           return NOT_FOUND;

     close(2),  getdirentries(2),  lseek(2),  open(2),  dir(5)

     The opendir(), readdir(), telldir(), seekdir(), rewinddir(), closedir(),
     and dirfd() functions appeared in 4.2BSD.

OpenBSD 2.6                      June 4, 1993                                2

Source: OpenBSD 2.6 man pages. Copyright: Portions are copyrighted by BERKELEY
SOFTWARE DESIGN, INC., The Regents of the University of California, Massachusetts
Institute of Technology, Free Software Foundation, FreeBSD Inc., and others.

(Corrections, notes, and links courtesy of RocketAware.com)

[Detailed Topics]
FreeBSD Sources for directory(3) functions
OpenBSD sources for directory(3)

[Overview Topics]

Up to: Directory Access - Accessing directories of files, browsing, management, et al.

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