return values of os.system() on win32

Peter Hansen peter at
Fri Jan 13 12:06:43 EST 2006

rbt wrote:
> Is it safe to say that any value returned by os.system() other than 0 is 
> an error?
> if os.system('winver') != 0:
>      print "Winver failed!"
> else:
>      print "Winver Worked."

According to the docs, assuming that *in general* would be an error, but 
it's likely that for the sorts of cases you are talking about, it's true.

Ultimately, since the return code is generally under the control of the 
application you're calling, it's absolutely possible (likely) that there 
are many programs which do not work as you assume above, and probably a 
large number which don't ever explicitly set the return value at all...


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