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SETLOCALE(3)               Linux Programmer's Manual              SETLOCALE(3)



NAME
       setlocale - set the current locale

SYNOPSIS
       #include <locale.h>

       char *setlocale(int category, const char *locale);

DESCRIPTION
       The setlocale() function is used to set or query the program's current locale.

       If  locale  is  not NULL, the program's current locale is modified according to the
       arguments.  The argument category determines which parts of the  program's  current
       locale should be modified.

       LC_ALL for all of the locale.

       LC_COLLATE
              for  regular expression matching (it determines the meaning of range expres-
              sions and equivalence classes) and string collation.

       LC_CTYPE
              for regular expression matching, character classification, conversion, case-
              sensitive comparison, and wide character functions.

       LC_MESSAGES
              for localizable natural-language messages.

       LC_MONETARY
              for monetary formatting.

       LC_NUMERIC
              for  number  formatting (such as the decimal point and the thousands separa-
              tor).

       LC_TIME
              for time and date formatting.

       The argument locale is a pointer to a character string containing the required set-
       ting  of  category.   Such  a  string  is  either a well-known constant like "C" or
       "da_DK" (see below), or an opaque string that was returned by another call of  set-
       locale().

       If  locale  is "", each part of the locale that should be modified is set according
       to the environment  variables.   The  details  are  implementation-dependent.   For
       glibc,   first  (regardless  of  category),  the  environment  variable  LC_ALL  is
       inspected, next the environment  variable  with  the  same  name  as  the  category
       (LC_COLLATE,  LC_CTYPE,  LC_MESSAGES, LC_MONETARY, LC_NUMERIC, LC_TIME) and finally
       the environment variable LANG.  The first existing environment  variable  is  used.
       If its value is not a valid locale specification, the locale is unchanged, and set-
       locale() returns NULL.

       The locale "C" or "POSIX" is a portable locale; its LC_CTYPE  part  corresponds  to
       the 7-bit ASCII character set.

       A  locale  name is typically of the form language[_territory][.codeset][@modifier],
       where language is an ISO 639 language code, territory is an ISO 3166 country  code,
       and  codeset  is  a  character set or encoding identifier like ISO-8859-1 or UTF-8.
       For a list of all supported locales, try "locale -a", cf. locale(1).

       If locale is NULL, the current locale is only queried, not modified.

       On startup of the main program, the portable "C" locale is selected as default.   A
       program may be made portable to all locales by calling:

           setlocale(LC_ALL, "");

       after  program  initialization,  by  using the values returned from a localeconv(3)
       call for locale-dependent information, by using the multi-byte and  wide  character
       functions  for  text  processing  if  MB_CUR_MAX  >  1,  and  by  using strcoll(3),
       wcscoll(3) or strxfrm(3), wcsxfrm(3) to compare strings.

RETURN VALUE
       A successful call to setlocale() returns an opaque string that corresponds  to  the
       locale  set.   This string may be allocated in static storage.  The string returned
       is such that a subsequent call with that string and its  associated  category  will
       restore that part of the process's locale.  The return value is NULL if the request
       cannot be honored.

CONFORMING TO
       C89, C99, POSIX.1-2001.

NOTES
       Linux (that is, glibc) supports the portable locales "C" and "POSIX".  In the  good
       old  days  there  used  to  be support for the European Latin-1 "ISO-8859-1" locale
       (e.g., in libc-4.5.21 and libc-4.6.27), and the Russian  "KOI-8"  (more  precisely,
       "koi-8r")  locale  (e.g.,  in  libc-4.6.27), so that having an environment variable
       LC_CTYPE=ISO-8859-1 sufficed to make isprint(3) return  the  right  answer.   These
       days  non-English  speaking  Europeans  have to work a bit harder, and must install
       actual locale files.

SEE ALSO
       locale(1), localedef(1),  isalpha(3),  localeconv(3),  nl_langinfo(3),  rpmatch(3),
       strcoll(3), strftime(3), charsets(7), locale(7)

COLOPHON
       This page is part of release 3.22 of the Linux man-pages project.  A description of
       the project, and information about reporting bugs, can be found at  http://www.ker-
       nel.org/doc/man-pages/.



GNU                               2008-12-05                      SETLOCALE(3)

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