FNMATCH(3C)FNMATCH(3C)NAMEfnmatch - match filename or path name
int fnmatch(const char *pattern, const char *string, int flags);
The fnmatch() function matches patterns as described on the fnmatch(5)
manual page. It checks the string argument to see if it matches the
The flags argument modifies the interpretation of pattern and string.
It is the bitwise inclusive OR of zero or more of the following flags
defined in the header <fnmatch.h>.
If set, a slash (/) character in string will be
explicitly matched by a slash in pattern; it will not
be matched by either the asterisk (*) or question-
mark (?) special characters, nor by a bracket ()
If not set, the slash character is treated as an
If not set, a backslash character (\) in pattern fol‐
lowed by any other character will match that second
character in string. In particular, "\\" will match a
backslash in string.
If set, a backslash character will be treated as an
If set, a leading period in string will match a
period in pattern; where the location of "leading" is
indicated by the value of FNM_PATHNAME:
o If FNM_PATHNAME is set, a period is "lead‐
ing" if it is the first character in
string or if it immediately follows a
o If FNM_PATHNAME is not set, a period is
"leading" only if it is the first charac‐
ter of string.
If not set, no special restrictions are placed on matching a period.
If string matches the pattern specified by pattern, then fnmatch()
returns 0. If there is no match, fnmatch() returns FNM_NOMATCH, which
is defined in the header <fnmatch.h>. If an error occurs, fnmatch()
returns another non-zero value.
The fnmatch() function has two major uses. It could be used by an
application or utility that needs to read a directory and apply a pat‐
tern against each entry. The find(1) utility is an example of this. It
can also be used by the pax(1) utility to process its pattern operands,
or by applications that need to match strings in a similar manner.
The name fnmatch() is intended to imply filename match, rather than
pathname match. The default action of this function is to match file‐
names, rather than path names, since it gives no special significance
to the slash character. With the FNM_PATHNAME flag, fnmatch() does
match path names, but without tilde expansion, parameter expansion, or
special treatment for period at the beginning of a filename.
The fnmatch() function can be used safely in multithreaded applica‐
tions, as long as setlocale(3C) is not being called to change the
See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following attributes:
│ ATTRIBUTE TYPE │ ATTRIBUTE VALUE │
│CSI │ Enabled │
│Interface Stability │ Standard │
│MT-Level │ MT-Safe with exceptions │
SEE ALSOfind(1), pax(1), glob(3C), setlocale(3C), wordexp(3C), attributes(5),
Jul 24, 2002 FNMATCH(3C)