MPROTECT

Section: Linux Programmer's Manual (2)
Updated: 2003-08-24
Index Return to Main Contents
 

NAME

mprotect - control allowable accesses to a region of memory  

SYNOPSIS

#include <sys/mman.h>

int mprotect(const void *addr, size_t len, int prot);
 

DESCRIPTION

The function mprotect() specifies the desired protection for the memory page(s) containing part or all of the interval [addr,addr+len-1]. If an access is disallowed by the protection given it, the program receives a SIGSEGV.

prot is a bitwise-or of the following values:

PROT_NONE
The memory cannot be accessed at all.
PROT_READ
The memory can be read.
PROT_WRITE
The memory can be written to.
PROT_EXEC
The memory can contain executing code.

The new protection replaces any existing protection. For example, if the memory had previously been marked PROT_READ, and mprotect() is then called with prot PROT_WRITE, it will no longer be readable.  

RETURN VALUE

On success, mprotect() returns zero. On error, -1 is returned, and errno is set appropriately.  

ERRORS

EACCES
The memory cannot be given the specified access. This can happen, for example, if you mmap(2) a file to which you have read-only access, then ask mprotect() to mark it PROT_WRITE.
EFAULT
The memory cannot be accessed.
EINVAL
addr is not a valid pointer, or not a multiple of PAGESIZE.
ENOMEM
Internal kernel structures could not be allocated. Or: addresses in the range [addr, addr+len] are invalid for the address space of the process, or specify one or more pages that are not mapped.
 

EXAMPLE

#include <stdio.h>
#include <stdlib.h>
#include <errno.h>
#include <sys/mman.h>

#include <limits.h>    /* for PAGESIZE */
#ifndef PAGESIZE
#define PAGESIZE 4096
#endif

int
main(void)
{
    char *p;
    char c;

    /* Allocate a buffer; it will have the default
       protection of PROT_READ|PROT_WRITE. */
    p = malloc(1024+PAGESIZE-1);
    if (!p) {
        perror("Couldn't malloc(1024)");
        exit(errno);
    }

    /* Align to a multiple of PAGESIZE, assumed to be a power of two */
    p = (char *)(((int) p + PAGESIZE-1) & ~(PAGESIZE-1));

    c = p[666];         /* Read; ok */
    p[666] = 42;        /* Write; ok */

    /* Mark the buffer read-only. */
    if (mprotect(p, 1024, PROT_READ)) {
        perror("Couldn't mprotect");
        exit(errno);
    }

    c = p[666];         /* Read; ok */
    p[666] = 42;        /* Write; program dies on SIGSEGV */

    exit(0);
}
 

CONFORMING TO

SVr4, POSIX.1-2001. POSIX says that mprotect() can be used only on regions of memory obtained from mmap(2).  

NOTES

On Linux it is always legal to call mprotect() on any address in a process' address space (except for the kernel vsyscall area). In particular it can be used to change existing code mappings to be writable.

Whether PROT_EXEC has any effect different from PROT_READ is architecture and kernel version dependent.  

SEE ALSO

mmap(2)


 

Index

NAME
SYNOPSIS
DESCRIPTION
RETURN VALUE
ERRORS
EXAMPLE
CONFORMING TO
NOTES
SEE ALSO

linux.jgfs.net manual pages