_tell, _telli64

Get the position of the file pointer.

long _tell(
   int handle
__int64 _telli64(
   int handle 


  • handle
    File descriptor referring to open file.

Return Value

The current position of the file pointer. On devices incapable of seeking, the return value is undefined.

A return value of –1L indicates an error. If handle is an invalid file descriptor, the invalid parameter handler is invoked, as described in Parameter Validation. If execution is allowed to continue, these functions set errno to EBADF and return -1L.

See _doserrno, errno, _sys_errlist, and _sys_nerr for more information on this, and other, return codes.


The _tell function gets the current position of the file pointer (if any) associated with the handle argument. The position is expressed as the number of bytes from the beginning of the file. For the _telli64 function, this value is expressed as a 64-bit integer.



Required header

_tell, _telli64


For additional compatibility information, see Compatibility in the Introduction.


// crt_tell.c
// This program uses _tell to tell the
// file pointer position after a file read.

#include <io.h>
#include <stdio.h>
#include <fcntl.h>
#include <share.h>
#include <string.h>

int main( void )
   int  fh;
   char buffer[500];

   if ( _sopen_s( &fh, "crt_tell.txt", _O_RDONLY, _SH_DENYNO, 0) )
      char buff[50];
      _strerror_s( buff, sizeof(buff), NULL );
      printf( buff );
      exit( -1 );

   if( _read( fh, buffer, 500 ) > 0 )
      printf( "Current file position is: %d\n", _tell( fh ) );
   _close( fh );

Input: crt_tell.txt

Line one.
Line two.


Current file position is: 20

See Also


Low-Level I/O

ftell, _ftelli64

_lseek, _lseeki64