fgets, fgetws

Get a string from a stream.


char *fgets(
   char *str,
   int numChars,
   FILE *stream
wchar_t *fgetws(
   wchar_t *str,
   int numChars,
   FILE *stream


Storage location for data.

Maximum number of characters to read.

Pointer to FILE structure.

Return value

Each of these functions returns str. NULL is returned to indicate an error or an end-of-file condition. Use feof or ferror to determine whether an error occurred. If str or stream is a null pointer, or numChars is less than or equal to zero, this function invokes the invalid parameter handler, as described in Parameter validation. If execution is allowed to continue, errno is set to EINVAL and the function returns NULL.

For more information about return codes, see errno, _doserrno, _sys_errlist, and _sys_nerr.


The fgets function reads a string from the input stream argument and stores it in str. fgets reads characters from the current stream position to and including the first newline character, to the end of the stream, or until the number of characters read is equal to numChars - 1, whichever comes first. The result stored in str is appended with a null character. The newline character, if read, is included in the string.

fgetws is a wide-character version of fgets.

fgetws reads the wide-character argument str as a multibyte-character string or as a wide-character string when stream is opened in text mode or binary mode, respectively. For more information about using text and binary modes in Unicode and multibyte stream-I/O, see Text and binary mode file I/O and Unicode stream I/O in text and binary modes.

By default, this function's global state is scoped to the application. To change this behavior, see Global state in the CRT.

Generic-text routine mappings

TCHAR.H routine _UNICODE and _MBCS not defined _MBCS defined _UNICODE defined
_fgetts fgets fgets fgetws


Function Required header
fgets <stdio.h>
fgetws <stdio.h> or <wchar.h>

For more compatibility information, see Compatibility.


// crt_fgets.c
// This program uses fgets to display
// the first line from a file.

#include <stdio.h>

int main( void )
   FILE *stream;
   char line[100];

   if( fopen_s( &stream, "crt_fgets.txt", "r" ) == 0 )
      if( fgets( line, 100, stream ) == NULL)
         printf( "fgets error\numChars" );
         printf( "%s", line);
      fclose( stream );

Input: crt_fgets.txt

Line one.
Line two.


Line one.

See also

Stream I/O
fputs, fputws
gets, _getws
puts, _putws