bug: subprocess.Popen() hangs

Jonathan Amsterdam jbamsterdam at gmail.com
Thu Oct 25 18:00:43 CEST 2007


This is a bug in python 2.4 under Linux 2.6.

I occasionally see subprocess.Popen() fail to return, and I have
finally figured out roughly what's going on. It involves the GC and
stderr.

1. os.fork()

2. Parent blocks reading from errpipe_read (subprocess.py:982)

3. In child, a GC occurs before the exec.

4. The GC attempts to free a file descriptor, calling file_dealloc.

5. That function gets an error closing the descriptor ("close failed:
[Errno 9] Bad file descriptor\n," is the string I extracted via gdb).

6. It attempts to write the error to stderr and blocks. Since it never
execs or writes to errpipe_write, both child and parent are hung.

Here is the pstack output on the child:

#0  0x006587a2 in _dl_sysinfo_int80 () from /lib/ld-linux.so.2
#1  0x0072f11b in __write_nocancel () from /lib/tls/libc.so.6
#2  0x006d409f in _IO_new_file_write () from /lib/tls/libc.so.6
#3  0x006d42ec in _IO_new_file_xsputn () from /lib/tls/libc.so.6
#4  0x006afce9 in buffered_vfprintf () from /lib/tls/libc.so.6
#5  0x006afe8b in vfprintf () from /lib/tls/libc.so.6
#6  0x080dd4af in mywrite ()
#7  0x080dd505 in PySys_WriteStderr ()
#8  0x08064cd0 in file_dealloc ()
#9  0x08079c88 in dict_dealloc ()
#10 0x0808931d in subtype_dealloc ()
#11 0x08079af3 in PyDict_Clear ()
#12 0x0807bb6a in dict_tp_clear ()
#13 0x080e0ead in collect ()
#14 0x080e1912 in _PyObject_GC_New ()
#15 0x0805e50b in PyInstance_NewRaw ()
#16 0x0805e5d7 in PyInstance_New ()
#17 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#18 0x080aecef in PyEval_CallObjectWithKeywords ()
#19 0x080ca975 in PyErr_NormalizeException ()
#20 0x080b492c in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#21 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#22 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#23 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#24 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#25 0x080fce92 in function_call ()
#26 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#27 0x080641e5 in instancemethod_call ()
#28 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#29 0x0808ffce in slot_tp_init ()
#30 0x08088b3a in type_call ()
#31 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#32 0x080b0f05 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#33 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#34 0x080fce92 in function_call ()
#35 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#36 0x080641e5 in instancemethod_call ()
#37 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#38 0x0808ffce in slot_tp_init ()
#39 0x08088b3a in type_call ()
#40 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#41 0x080b0f05 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#42 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#43 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#44 0x080fce92 in function_call ()
#45 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#46 0x080641e5 in instancemethod_call ()
#47 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#48 0x0808ffce in slot_tp_init ()
#49 0x08088b3a in type_call ()
#50 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#51 0x080b0f05 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#52 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#53 0x080fce92 in function_call ()
#54 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#55 0x080b075f in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#56 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#57 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#58 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#59 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#60 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#61 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#62 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#63 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#64 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#65 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#66 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#67 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#68 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#69 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#70 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#71 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#72 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#73 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#74 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#75 0x080fce92 in function_call ()
#76 0x0805bdc0 in PyObject_Call ()
#77 0x080b075f in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#78 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#79 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#80 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#81 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#82 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#83 0x080b3c83 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#84 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#85 0x080b5734 in PyEval_EvalFrame ()
#86 0x080b5eb2 in PyEval_EvalCodeEx ()
#87 0x080b601a in PyEval_EvalCode ()
#88 0x080d9ff4 in PyRun_FileExFlags ()
#89 0x080da8d6 in PyRun_SimpleFileExFlags ()
#90 0x08055617 in Py_Main ()
#91 0x08054e3f in main ()




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