MSYNC(2) Linux Programmer's Manual MSYNC(2)NAMEmsync - synchronize a file with a memory map
int msync(void *addr, size_t length, int flags);
DESCRIPTIONmsync() flushes changes made to the in-core copy of a file that was
mapped into memory using mmap(2) back to disk. Without use of this
call there is no guarantee that changes are written back before mun‐
map(2) is called. To be more precise, the part of the file that corre‐
sponds to the memory area starting at addr and having length length is
The flags argument may have the bits MS_ASYNC, MS_SYNC, and MS_INVALI‐
DATE set, but not both MS_ASYNC and MS_SYNC. MS_ASYNC specifies that
an update be scheduled, but the call returns immediately. MS_SYNC asks
for an update and waits for it to complete. MS_INVALIDATE asks to
invalidate other mappings of the same file (so that they can be updated
with the fresh values just written).
On success, zero is returned. On error, -1 is returned, and errno is
EBUSY MS_INVALIDATE was specified in flags, and a memory lock exists
for the specified address range.
EINVAL addr is not a multiple of PAGESIZE; or any bit other than
MS_ASYNC | MS_INVALIDATE | MS_SYNC is set in flags; or both
MS_SYNC and MS_ASYNC are set in flags.
ENOMEM The indicated memory (or part of it) was not mapped.
This call was introduced in Linux 1.3.21, and then used EFAULT instead
of ENOMEM. In Linux 2.4.19 this was changed to the POSIX value ENOMEM.
On POSIX systems on which msync() is available, both
_POSIX_MAPPED_FILES and _POSIX_SYNCHRONIZED_IO are defined in
<unistd.h> to a value greater than 0. (See also sysconf(3).)
According to POSIX, either MS_SYNC or MS_ASYNC must be specified in
flags, and indeed failure to include one of these flags will cause
msync() to fail on some systems. However, Linux permits a call to
msync() that specifies neither of these flags, with semantics that are
(currently) equivalent to specifying MS_ASYNC. (Since Linux 2.6.19,
MS_ASYNC is in fact a no-op, since the kernel properly tracks dirty
pages and flushes them to storage as necessary.) Notwithstanding the
Linux behavior, portable, future-proof applications should ensure that
they specify either MS_SYNC or MS_ASYNC in flags.
B.O. Gallmeister, POSIX.4, O'Reilly, pp. 128-129 and 389-391.
This page is part of release 3.65 of the Linux man-pages project. A
description of the project, and information about reporting bugs, can
be found at http://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/.
Linux 2014-04-20 MSYNC(2)