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Linux 2.6 - man page for syscall (linux section 2)

SYSCALL(2)			    Linux Programmer's Manual			       SYSCALL(2)

       syscall - indirect system call

       #define _GNU_SOURCE	   /* See feature_test_macros(7) */
       #include <unistd.h>
       #include <sys/syscall.h>   /* For SYS_xxx definitions */

       int syscall(int number, ...);

       syscall() is a small library function that invokes the system call whose assembly language
       interface has the specified number with the specified arguments.  Employing  syscall()  is
       useful,	for  example,  when  invoking a system call that has no wrapper function in the C

       syscall() saves CPU registers before making the system call, restores the  registers  upon
       return  from  the  system  call,  and stores any error code returned by the system call in
       errno(3) if an error occurs.

       Symbolic  constants  for  system  call  numbers	can  be  found	 in   the   header   file

       The  return  value  is  defined	by the system call being invoked.  In general, a 0 return
       value indicates success.  A -1 return value indicates an  error,  and  an  error  code  is
       stored in errno.

       syscall() first appeared in 4BSD.

   Architecture-specific requirements
       Each  architecture ABI has its own requirements on how system call arguments are passed to
       the kernel.  For system calls that have a glibc wrapper (e.g., most system  calls),  glibc
       handles	the  details of copying arguments to the right registers in a manner suitable for
       the architecture.  However, when using syscall() to make a system call, the  caller  might
       need  to  handle architecture-dependent details; this requirement is most commonly encoun-
       tered on certain 32-bit architectures.

       For example, on the ARM architecture Embedded ABI (EABI), a 64-bit value (e.g., long long)
       must  be  aligned  to an even register pair.  Thus, using syscall() instead of the wrapper
       provided by glibc, the readahead() system call would be invoked	as  follows  on  the  ARM
       architecture with the EABI:

	   syscall(SYS_readahead, fd, 0,
		   (unsigned int) (offset >> 32),
		   (unsigned int) (offset & 0xFFFFFFFF),

       Since  the  offset  argument  is 64 bits, and the first argument (fd) is passed in r0, the
       caller must manually split and align the 64-bit value so that it is passed  in  the  r2/r3
       register pair.  That means inserting a dummy value into r1 (the second argument of 0).

       Similar	issues can occur on MIPS with the O32 ABI, on PowerPC with the 32-bit ABI, and on

       The  affected  system  calls  are   fadvise64_64(2),   ftruncate64(2),	posix_fadvise(2),
       pread64(2), pwrite64(2), readahead(2), sync_file_range(2), and truncate64(2).

   Architecture calling conventions
       Every  architecture  has its own way of invoking and passing arguments to the kernel.  The
       details for various architectures are listed in the two tables below.

       The first table lists the instruction used to transition to kernel mode, (which might  not
       be  the fastest or best way to transition to the kernel, so you might have to refer to the
       VDSO), the register used to indicate the system call number,  and  the  register  used  to
       return the system call result.

       arch/ABI   instruction	       syscall #   retval Notes
       arm/OABI   swi NR	       -	   a1	  NR is syscall #
       arm/EABI   swi 0x0	       r7	   r0
       blackfin   excpt 0x0	       P0	   R0
       i386	  int $0x80	       eax	   eax
       ia64	  break 0x100000       r15	   r10/r8
       parisc	  ble 0x100(%sr2, %r0) r20	   r28
       s390	  svc 0 	       r1	   r2	  NR may be passed directly with
       s390x	  svc 0 	       r1	   r2	  "svc NR" if NR is less than 256
       sparc/32   t 0x10	       g1	   o0
       sparc/64   t 0x6d	       g1	   o0
       x86_64	  syscall	       rax	   rax

       The second table shows the registers used to pass the system call arguments.

       arch/ABI   arg1	 arg2	arg3   arg4   arg5   arg6   arg7
       arm/OABI   a1	 a2	a3     a4     v1     v2     v3
       arm/EABI   r0	 r1	r2     r3     r4     r5     r6
       blackfin   R0	 R1	R2     R3     R4     R5     -
       i386	  ebx	 ecx	edx    esi    edi    ebp    -
       ia64	  r11	 r9	r10    r14    r15    r13    -
       parisc	  r26	 r25	r24    r23    r22    r21    -
       s390	  r2	 r3	r4     r5     r6     r7     -
       s390x	  r2	 r3	r4     r5     r6     r7     -
       sparc/32   o0	 o1	o2     o3     o4     o5     -
       sparc/64   o0	 o1	o2     o3     o4     o5     -
       x86_64	  rdi	 rsi	rdx    r10    r8     r9     -

       Note  that  these tables don't cover the entire calling convention--some architectures may
       indiscriminately clobber other registers not listed here.

       #define _GNU_SOURCE
       #include <unistd.h>
       #include <sys/syscall.h>
       #include <sys/types.h>
       #include <signal.h>

       main(int argc, char *argv[])
	   pid_t tid;

	   tid = syscall(SYS_gettid);
	   tid = syscall(SYS_tgkill, getpid(), tid, SIGHUP);

       _syscall(2), intro(2), syscalls(2)

       This page is part of release 3.55 of the Linux man-pages project.  A  description  of  the
       project,     and    information	  about    reporting	bugs,	 can	be    found    at

Linux					    2013-09-17				       SYSCALL(2)

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