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NAME

       modify_ldt - get or set a per-process LDT entry

SYNOPSIS

       #include <sys/types.h>

       int modify_ldt(int func, void *ptr, unsigned long bytecount);

       Note: There is no glibc wrapper for this system call; see NOTES.

DESCRIPTION

       modify_ldt()  reads  or writes the local descriptor table (LDT) for a process.  The LDT is
       an array of segment descriptors that  can  be  referenced  by  user  code.   Linux  allows
       processes  to  configure  a per-process (actually per-mm) LDT.  For more information about
       the LDT, see the Intel Software Developer's Manual or  the  AMD  Architecture  Programming
       Manual.

       When  func is 0, modify_ldt() reads the LDT into the memory pointed to by ptr.  The number
       of bytes read is the smaller of bytecount and the actual size of  the  LDT,  although  the
       kernel  may  act  as  though  the  LDT  is padded with additional trailing zero bytes.  On
       success, modify_ldt() will return the number of bytes read.

       When  func  is  1  or  0x11,  modify_ldt()   modifies   the   LDT   entry   indicated   by
       ptr->entry_number.   ptr points to a user_desc structure and bytecount must equal the size
       of this structure.

       The user_desc structure is defined in <asm/ldt.h> as:

           struct user_desc {
               unsigned int  entry_number;
               unsigned long base_addr;
               unsigned int  limit;
               unsigned int  seg_32bit:1;
               unsigned int  contents:2;
               unsigned int  read_exec_only:1;
               unsigned int  limit_in_pages:1;
               unsigned int  seg_not_present:1;
               unsigned int  useable:1;
           };

       In Linux 2.4 and earlier, this structure was named modify_ldt_ldt_s.

       The contents field is the segment type (data, expand-down data,  non-conforming  code,  or
       conforming  code).   The other fields match their descriptions in the CPU manual, although
       modify_ldt() cannot set the hardware-defined "accessed" bit described in the CPU manual.

       A user_desc is considered "empty" if read_exec_only and seg_not_present are set to  1  and
       all  of  the  other fields are 0.  An LDT entry can be cleared by setting it to an "empty"
       user_desc or, if func is 1, by setting both base and limit to 0.

       A conforming code segment (i.e., one with contents==3) will be rejected if func is 1 or if
       seg_not_present is 0.

       When  func  is  2, modify_ldt() will read zeros.  This appears to be a leftover from Linux
       2.4.

RETURN VALUE

       On success, modify_ldt() returns either the actual number of bytes read (for reading) or 0
       (for writing).  On failure, modify_ldt() returns -1 and sets errno to indicate the error.

ERRORS

       EFAULT ptr points outside the address space.

       EINVAL ptr  is  0,  or  func  is 1 and bytecount is not equal to the size of the structure
              user_desc, or func is 1 or 0x11 and the new LDT entry has invalid values.

       ENOSYS func is neither 0, 1, 2, nor 0x11.

CONFORMING TO

       This call is Linux-specific and should not be used in programs intended to be portable.

NOTES

       Glibc does not provide a wrapper for this system call; call it using syscall(2).

       modify_ldt() should not be used  for  thread-local  storage,  as  it  slows  down  context
       switches  and  only  supports a limited number of threads.  Threading libraries should use
       set_thread_area(2) or arch_prctl(2) instead, except on extremely old kernels that  do  not
       support those system calls.

       The normal use for modify_ldt() is to run legacy 16-bit or segmented 32-bit code.  Not all
       kernels allow 16-bit segments to be installed, however.

       Even on 64-bit kernels, modify_ldt() cannot be used to create a long mode  (i.e.,  64-bit)
       code  segment.   The  undocumented field "lm" in user_desc is not useful, and, despite its
       name, does not result in a long mode segment.

BUGS

       On 64-bit kernels before Linux 3.19, setting  the  "lm"  bit  in  user_desc  prevents  the
       descriptor  from being considered empty.  Keep in mind that the "lm" bit does not exist in
       the 32-bit headers, but these buggy kernels will still notice the bit even when set  in  a
       32-bit process.

SEE ALSO

       arch_prctl(2), set_thread_area(2), vm86(2)

COLOPHON

       This  page  is  part of release 4.13 of the Linux man-pages project.  A description of the
       project, information about reporting bugs, and the latest version of  this  page,  can  be
       found at https://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/.