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LOCKF(1)			   BSD General Commands Manual				 LOCKF(1)

NAME
     lockf -- execute a command while holding a file lock

SYNOPSIS
     lockf [-ks] [-t seconds] file command [arguments]

DESCRIPTION
     The lockf utility acquires an exclusive lock on a file, creating it if necessary, and remov-
     ing the file on exit unless explicitly told not to.  While holding the lock, it executes a
     command with optional arguments.  After the command completes, lockf releases the lock, and
     removes the file unless the -k option is specified.  BSD-style locking is used, as described
     in flock(2); the mere existence of the file is not considered to constitute a lock.

     If the lockf utility is being used to facilitate concurrency between a number of processes,
     it is recommended that the -k option be used.  This will guarantee lock ordering, as well as
     implement a performance enhanced algorithm which minimizes CPU load associated with concur-
     rent unlink, drop and re-acquire activity.  It should be noted that if the -k option is not
     used, then no guarantees around lock ordering can be made.

     The following options are supported:

     -k 	 Causes the lock file to be kept (not removed) after the command completes.

     -s 	 Causes lockf to operate silently.  Failure to acquire the lock is indicated only
		 in the exit status.

     -t seconds  Specifies a timeout for waiting for the lock.	By default, lockf waits indefi-
		 nitely to acquire the lock.  If a timeout is specified with this option, lockf
		 will wait at most the given number of seconds before giving up.  A timeout of 0
		 may be given, in which case lockf will fail unless it can acquire the lock imme-
		 diately.  When a lock times out, command is not executed.

     In no event will lockf break a lock that is held by another process.

EXIT STATUS
     If lockf successfully acquires the lock, it returns the exit status produced by command.
     Otherwise, it returns one of the exit codes defined in sysexits(3), as follows:

     EX_TEMPFAIL   The specified lock file was already locked by another process.

     EX_CANTCREAT  The lockf utility was unable to create the lock file, e.g., because of insuf-
		   ficient access privileges.

     EX_USAGE	   There was an error on the lockf command line.

     EX_OSERR	   A system call (e.g., fork(2)) failed unexpectedly.

     EX_SOFTWARE   The command did not exit normally, but may have been signaled or stopped.

SEE ALSO
     flock(2), sysexits(3)

HISTORY
     A lockf utility first appeared in FreeBSD 2.2.

AUTHORS
     John Polstra <jdp@polstra.com>

BSD					   July 7, 1998 				      BSD
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