- NetBSD Manual Pages
TTYNAME(3) NetBSD Library Functions Manual TTYNAME(3)
Powered by man-cgi (2021-03-02).
Maintained for NetBSD
by Kimmo Suominen.
Based on man-cgi by Panagiotis Christias.
ttyname, ttyname_r, isatty, ttyslot -- get name of associated terminal
(tty) from file descriptor
Standard C Library (libc, -lc)
ttyname_r(int fd, char *buf, size_t len);
These functions operate on the system file descriptors for terminal type
devices. These descriptors are not related to the standard I/O FILE
typedef, but refer to the special device files found in /dev and named
/dev/ttyxx and for which an entry exists in the initialization file
/etc/ttys (see ttys(5)), or for pseudo-terminal devices created in ptyfs
and named /dev/pts/n.
The isatty() function determines if the file descriptor fd refers to a
valid terminal type device.
The ttyname() function gets the related device name of a file descriptor
for which isatty() is true. The ttyname_r() is the reentrant version of
the above, and it places the results in buf. If there is not enough
space to place the results (indicated by len), then it returns an error.
The ttyslot() function fetches the current process' control terminal num-
ber from the ttys(5) file entry. If the terminal is a pseudo-terminal,
and there is no special entry in the ttys(5) file for it, the slot number
returned is 1 + (last slot number) + minor(tty). This will return a con-
sistent and unique number for each pseudo-terminal device without requir-
ing one to enumerate all of them in ttys(5).
As an optimisation, these functions attempt to obtain information about
all devices from the /var/run/dev.cdb database, if it exists. If the
database exists but is out of date, then these functions may produce
incorrect results. The database should be updated using the dev_mkdb(8)
The ttyname() function returns the NUL-terminated name if the device is
found and isatty() is true; otherwise a NULL pointer is returned and
errno is set to indicate the error.
The ttyname_r() functions returns 0 on success and an error code on fail-
The isatty() function returns 1 if fd is associated with a terminal
device; otherwise it returns 0 and errno is set to indicate the error.
The ttyslot() function returns the unit number of the device file if
found; otherwise the value zero is returned.
The ttyname(), ttyname_r(), and isatty() functions will fail if:
[EBADF] The fd argument is not a valid file descriptor.
[ENOTTY] The fd argument does not refer to a terminal device.
The ttyname_r() function will also fail if:
[ENOENT] The terminal device is not found. This can happen if
the device node has been removed after it was opened.
[ERANGE] The buffer provided is not large enough to fit the
ioctl(2), ttys(5), dev_mkdb(8)
The ttyname() and isatty() functions conform to ISO/IEC 9945-1:1990
isatty(), ttyname(), and ttyslot() functions appeared in Version 7 AT&T
The ttyname() function leaves its result in an internal static object and
returns a pointer to that object. Subsequent calls to ttyname() will
modify the same object.
NetBSD 9.99 June 1, 2012 NetBSD 9.99