How do I get "system" to report the correct failure message?

Discussion in 'Perl Misc' started by laredotornado, Feb 21, 2014.

  1. Hi,

    I'm using Perl 5.16 on mac 10.9.1. I'm trying to get Perl to output the correct error message when I run a shell process and that process fails. I have this ...

    system("$jbossHome/bin/", "--file=$file");
    if ( $? != 0 )
    die"Failed to deploy $downloadedFile: $!\n";

    However, what Perl reports is "Failed to deploy /tmp/my.war: Inappropriate ioctl for device" and when I run the command in a shell, the actual error message is "{"JBAS014653: Composite operation failed and was rolled back. Steps that failed:" => {"Operation step-2" => {"JBAS014671: Failed services" => {"jboss.web.deployment.default-host./my" => "org.jboss.msc.service.StartException in service jboss.web.deployment.default-host./my: JBAS018040: Failed to start context"},"JBAS014771: Services with missing/unavailable dependencies" => ["jboss.deployment.unit.\"my.war\" Missing[JBAS014861: <one or more transitive dependencies>]"]}}}".

    Any ideas how I can output the correct error message?
    laredotornado, Feb 21, 2014
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  2. $! is the Perl-equivalent of errno and it is set when an operation
    performed via the C library fails, usually, a system call. But no system
    calls made by your program failed during system, the program executed in
    this way 'failed' to accomplish something, hence, you got a non-zero
    exit status back. But (for obvious reasons), the system cannot provide
    error messages arbitrary "application failures". The value in $! is just
    one which happened to have been left in there when the last system call
    failed (which was very likely an expected failure during the course of
    system and hence, not reported to your code).
    Rainer Weikusat, Feb 21, 2014
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  3. system 'adwrwe';
    die "oups $^E\n" unless $? == 0;
    George Mpouras, Feb 21, 2014
  4. laredotornado

    Tim McDaniel Guest

    To clarify standard Perl (UNIX, really) terminology: "system call"
    roughly means a call into the operating system (or, I assume, if the
    OS in question doesn't provide a particular Perl builtin function, it
    might be an implementation provided by Perl).

    Anyway, "system call" means things like sysread, fork, gmtime, and
    such. It does not mean a call to the sub that happens to have the
    name "system". In Perl, "system()" is not referred to as a "system
    Indeed, that's the operative point. If I want to analyze the results
    of an external program, I have to capture its output in Perl using
    `...` or `... 2>&1` (if supported by the OS and/or shell) or more
    sophisticated methods. And I usually have to look at $?, as program
    that fail often exit with a non-zero exit code, and that goes into $?.
    See the perlfunc documentation for system to learn the structure of
    Tim McDaniel, Feb 22, 2014
  5. laredotornado

    C.DeRykus Guest

    Or, maybe outputting stdout/stderr will convey enough:

    use IPC::Run qw/run/;

    @cmd = ("$jbossHome/bin/", "--file=$file");

    run( \@cmd, '>&', \$out_and_err )
    or die "run: $? status=$out_and_err";
    C.DeRykus, Feb 23, 2014
  6. laredotornado

    hymie! Guest

    In our last episode, the evil Dr. Lacto had captured our hero,
    , who said:
    $ perldoc -f system

    This is not what you
    want to use to capture the output from a command; for that you
    should use merely backticks or "qx//", as described in
    "`STRING`" in perlop.

    hymie!, Feb 24, 2014
  7. Thanks for all the replies. Ultimately the one Charles provided did accurately output the error I was hoping to capture.
    laredotornado, Feb 24, 2014
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