C program to monitor and notify changes in a directory / file using inotify

 $ vim notify.c 
#include <stdio.h>
#include <stdlib.h>
#include <errno.h>
#include <sys/types.h>
#include <sys/inotify.h>
#include <limits.h>
#include <unistd.h>
 
#define MAX_EVENTS 1024 /*Max. number of events to process at one go*/
#define LEN_NAME 1024 /*Assuming length of the filename won't exceed 16 bytes*/
#define EVENT_SIZE  ( sizeof (struct inotify_event) ) /*size of one event*/
#define BUF_LEN     ( MAX_EVENTS * ( EVENT_SIZE + LEN_NAME )) /*buffer to store the data of events*/

void get_event (int fd) {
	char buffer[BUF_LEN];
	int length, i = 0;

	length = read( fd, buffer, BUF_LEN );  
	if ( length < 0 ) {
		perror( "read" );
	}  
 
	while ( i < length ) {
		struct inotify_event *event = ( struct inotify_event * ) &buffer[ i ];
		if ( event->len ) {
			if ( event->mask & IN_CREATE) {
				if (event->mask & IN_ISDIR)
					printf( "The directory %s was Created.\n", event->name );       
				else
					printf( "The file %s was Created with WD %d\n", event->name, event->wd );       
			}
           
			if ( event->mask & IN_MODIFY) {
				if (event->mask & IN_ISDIR)
					printf( "The directory %s was modified.\n", event->name );       
				else
					printf( "The file %s was modified with WD %d\n", event->name, event->wd );       
			}
           
			if ( event->mask & IN_DELETE) {
				if (event->mask & IN_ISDIR)
					printf( "The directory %s was deleted.\n", event->name );       
				else
					printf( "The file %s was deleted with WD %d\n", event->name, event->wd );       
			}  
			i += EVENT_SIZE + event->len;
		}
	}
}

int main( int argc, char **argv ) {
	int wd, fd;
 
	fd = inotify_init();
	if ( fd < 0 ) {
		perror( "Couldn't initialize inotify");
	}
 
	wd = inotify_add_watch(fd, argv[1], IN_CREATE | IN_MODIFY | IN_DELETE); 
	if (wd == -1) {
		printf("Couldn't add watch to %s\n",argv[1]);
	} else {
		printf("Watching:: %s\n",argv[1]);
	}
 
	/* do it forever*/
	while(1) {
		get_event(fd); 
	} 

	/* Clean up*/
	inotify_rm_watch( fd, wd );
	close( fd );
   
	return 0;
}
 $ gcc -o notify notify.c 

Now open another terminal and lets create a test directory as,

 $ mkdir helloworld_dir 

In the previous terminal, start notify program as,

 $ ./notify helloworld_dir/
Watching:: helloworld_dir/ 

Now, go to another terminal and create a test file,

 $ cd helloworld_dir 

$ touch hello.txt

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In this case, the first terminal will print like below,

$ ./notify helloworld_dir/
Watching:: helloworld_dir/
The file hello.txt was Created with WD 1

Now, in another window try to edit the hello.txt as,

 $ echo "modify hello.txt to add some lines " > hello.txt 

Then the first terminal should print a message as,

 The file hello.txt was modified with WD 1 

Reference : https://opensourceforu.com/2011/04/getting-started-with-inotify/

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