For historical reasons, the type of the C data structure that represents
a stream is called FILE rather than “stream”. Since most of
the library functions deal with objects of type FILE *, sometimes
the term file pointer is also used to mean “stream”. This leads
to unfortunate confusion over terminology in many books on C. This
manual, however, is careful to use the terms “file” and “stream”
only in the technical sense.
The FILE type is declared in the header file stdio.h.
— Data Type: FILE
This is the data type used to represent stream objects. A FILE
object holds all of the internal state information about the connection
to the associated file, including such things as the file position
indicator and buffering information. Each stream also has error and
end-of-file status indicators that can be tested with the ferror
and feof functions; see EOF and Errors.
FILE objects are allocated and managed internally by the
input/output library functions. Don't try to create your own objects of
type FILE; let the library do it. Your programs should
deal only with pointers to these objects (that is, FILE * values)
rather than the objects themselves.
Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License