[Python-Dev] webbrowser.py: browser >/dev/null 2>&1

Rodrigo Dias Arruda Senra rodsenra at gpr.com.br
Wed Mar 23 15:59:24 CET 2005

[Rod Senra]:
> > Under some linux distros (I'm positive for some Mdk releases), Mozilla is
> > compiled dumping a lot of info to stdout/stderr. Since one of the goals of
> > webbrowser is to give the end-user a stress-free experience, there goes the
> > mentioned nullification <wink>.

[Oleg Broytmann]:
> I see the point. Still I don't know what is worse and more stressful
> to hide errors or to show errors.
> MandrakeZilla spits too much to stdout/err? That's certainly a
> problem. Should we "fix" it and hide from the user? I don't think so.

That is undoubtly a good argument. In general, if the end user could fix
or report a problem based on a stdout/stderror message, I couln't agree more
on keeping them flowing.

However, there are two other issues:
1) If a *graphical* application  dumps messages to the console,
   that might be disruptive to other console applications. 
   IMVHO, a log file should be used instead. (strong argument)

2) If a dummy user sees a warning or info message in stdout/stdin
   that is not necessarily critical, it might interpret it wrongly
   as a error message and generate a false bug report. (weak argument)

In the case of webbrowser.py, since detection process might face a
diverse plethora of browsers (even unknown if defined by environment variables),
we cannot predict if 1) or 2) will ever happen. 
Therefore, my -1 vote in my previous reply. But I do see your point <wink>.

Has this same issue been dealt in another stdlib module ?

best regards,
Rod Senra

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