FLOCK(1) H. Peter Anvin FLOCK(1)

NAME flock - Manage locks from shell scripts

SYNOPSIS flock [-sxon] [-w timeout] lockfile [-c] command...

flock [-sxon] [-w timeout] lockdir [-c] command...

flock [-sxun] [-w timeout] fd

DESCRIPTION This utility manages flock(2) locks from within shell scripts or the command line.

The first and second forms wraps the lock around the executing a com- mand, in a manner similar to su(1) or newgrp(1). It locks a specified file or directory, which is created (assuming appropriate permissions), if it does not already exist.

The third form is convenient inside shell scripts, and is usually used the following manner:

( flock -s 200 # ... commands executed under lock ... ) 200>/var/lock/mylockfile

The mode used to open the file doesnt matter to flock; using > or >> allows the lockfile to be created if it does not already exist, how- ever, write permission is required; using < requires that the file already exists but only read permission is required.

By default, if the lock cannot be immediately acquired, flock waits until the lock is available.

OPTIONS -s, --shared Obtain a shared lock, sometimes called a read lock.

-x, -e, --exclusive Obtain an exclusive lock, sometimes called a write lock. This is the default.

-u, --unlock Drop a lock. This is usually not required, since a lock is automatically dropped when the file is closed. However, it may be required in special cases, for example if the enclosed com- mand group may have forked a background process which should not be holding the lock.

-n, --nb, --nonblock Fail (with an exit code of 1) rather than wait if the lock can- not be immediately acquired.

-w, --wait, --timeout seconds Fail (with an exit code of 1) if the lock cannot be acquired within seconds seconds. Decimal fractional values are allowed.

-o, --close Close the file descriptor on which the lock is held before exe- cuting command. This is useful if command spawns a child pro- cess which should not be hold ing the lock.

-c, --command command Pass a single command to the shell with -c.

-h, --help Print a help message.

AUTHOR Written by H. Peter Anvin <hpa@zytor.com>.

COPYRIGHT Copyright © 2003-2006 H. Peter Anvin. This is free software; see the source for copying conditions. There is NO warranty; not even for MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.

SEE ALSO flock(2)

AVAILABILITY The flock command is part of the util-linux-ng package and is available from ftp://ftp.kernel.org/pub/linux/utils/util-linux-ng/.

flock utility 4 Feb 2006 FLOCK(1)