Automatic bug reporting?

Fernando Perez fperez528 at yahoo.com
Tue Aug 6 00:28:20 CEST 2002


Jeremy Fincher wrote:

> Is there any module already available that can be used, for example,
> in a "catch all" exception handler to email the developer the
> almost-uncaught exception and its traceback?
> 
> For robustness' sake, my program needs to catch all exceptions and
> keep them from crashing the program, but those exceptions are bugs
> nonetheless and I'd like to get reports of their existence so I can
> fix them.  Of course, any module would be by default disabled and
> would only be enabled at the user's specific request.

You can look at ipython's CrashHandler module at 
http://www-hep.colorado.edu/~fperez/ipython/

When ipython crashes (rare, fortunately :) it generates a detailed log with a 
full traceback (with lots more detail than the regular ones, it's basically a 
text port of cgitb done by Nathan Gray and modified by me). Then it tells the 
user about it and prints the command line necessary for emailing. I don't 
email it automatically, but doing it would be a trivial change.

You want a traceback with a lot more detail than a normal one if this idea is 
going to work. Remember that you are debugging post-mortem something that 
happened on someone else's computer. But with these over-detailed tracebacks 
that Nathan put together it works like a charm. I recently was able to file a 
bug report (with fix) against pdb in the standard distro simply from reading 
an ipython crash report mailed by a user. The key was all the context 
information pointing me exactly to where the problem had occurred, which is 
not present in a normal traceback.

Cheers,

f.



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