ProcessStartInfo.RedirectStandardError Property

Definition

Gets or sets a value that indicates whether the error output of an application is written to the StandardError stream.

public:
 property bool RedirectStandardError { bool get(); void set(bool value); };
public bool RedirectStandardError { get; set; }
member this.RedirectStandardError : bool with get, set
Public Property RedirectStandardError As Boolean

Property Value

true if error output should be written to StandardError; otherwise, false. The default is false.

Examples

The following example uses the net use command together with a user-supplied argument to map a network resource. It then reads the standard error stream of the net command and writes it to console.

Process^ myProcess = gcnew Process;
ProcessStartInfo^ myProcessStartInfo = gcnew ProcessStartInfo( "net ",String::Concat( "use ", args[ 0 ] ) );

myProcessStartInfo->UseShellExecute = false;
myProcessStartInfo->RedirectStandardError = true;
myProcess->StartInfo = myProcessStartInfo;
myProcess->Start();

StreamReader^ myStreamReader = myProcess->StandardError;
// Read the standard error of net.exe and write it on to console.
Console::WriteLine( myStreamReader->ReadLine() );
myProcess->Close();
using (Process myProcess = new Process())
{
    ProcessStartInfo myProcessStartInfo = new ProcessStartInfo("net ", "use " + args[0]);

    myProcessStartInfo.UseShellExecute = false;
    myProcessStartInfo.RedirectStandardError = true;
    myProcess.StartInfo = myProcessStartInfo;
    myProcess.Start();

    StreamReader myStreamReader = myProcess.StandardError;
    // Read the standard error of net.exe and write it on to console.
    Console.WriteLine(myStreamReader.ReadLine());
}
Using myProcess As New Process()
    Dim myProcessStartInfo As New ProcessStartInfo("net ", "use " + args(0))

    myProcessStartInfo.UseShellExecute = False
    myProcessStartInfo.RedirectStandardError = True
    myProcess.StartInfo = myProcessStartInfo
    myProcess.Start()

    Dim myStreamReader As StreamReader = myProcess.StandardError
    ' Read the standard error of net.exe and write it on to console.
    Console.WriteLine(myStreamReader.ReadLine())
End Using

Remarks

When a Process writes text to its standard error stream, that text is typically displayed on the console. By redirecting the StandardError stream, you can manipulate or suppress the error output of a process. For example, you can filter the text, format it differently, or write the output to both the console and a designated log file.

Note

You must set UseShellExecute to false if you want to set RedirectStandardError to true. Otherwise, reading from the StandardError stream throws an exception.

The redirected StandardError stream can be read synchronously or asynchronously. Methods such as Read, ReadLine and ReadToEnd perform synchronous read operations on the error output stream of the process. These synchronous read operations do not complete until the associated Process writes to its StandardError stream, or closes the stream.

In contrast, BeginErrorReadLine starts asynchronous read operations on the StandardError stream. This method enables a designated event handler for the stream output and immediately returns to the caller, which can perform other work while the stream output is directed to the event handler.

Note

The application that is processing the asynchronous output should call the Process.WaitForExit method to ensure that the output buffer has been flushed.

Synchronous read operations introduce a dependency between the caller reading from the StandardError stream and the child process writing to that stream. These dependencies can cause deadlock conditions. When the caller reads from the redirected stream of a child process, it is dependent on the child. The caller waits for the read operation until the child writes to the stream or closes the stream. When the child process writes enough data to fill its redirected stream, it is dependent on the parent. The child process waits for the next write operation until the parent reads from the full stream or closes the stream. The deadlock condition results when the caller and child process wait for each other to complete an operation, and neither can continue. You can avoid deadlocks by evaluating dependencies between the caller and child process.

The last two examples in this section use the Start method to launch an executable named Write500Lines.exe. The following example contains its source code.

using System;
using System.IO;

public class Example
{
   public static void Main()
   {
      for (int ctr = 0; ctr < 500; ctr++)
         Console.WriteLine($"Line {ctr + 1} of 500 written: {ctr + 1/500.0:P2}");

      Console.Error.WriteLine("\nSuccessfully wrote 500 lines.\n");
   }
}
// The example displays the following output:
//      The last 50 characters in the output stream are:
//      ' 49,800.20%
//      Line 500 of 500 written: 49,900.20%
//'
//
//      Error stream: Successfully wrote 500 lines.
Imports System.IO

Public Module Example
   Public Sub Main()
      For ctr As Integer = 0 To 499
         Console.WriteLine($"Line {ctr + 1} of 500 written: {ctr + 1/500.0:P2}")
      Next

      Console.Error.WriteLine($"{vbCrLf}Successfully wrote 500 lines.{vbCrLf}")
   End Sub
End Module
' The example displays the following output:
'      The last 50 characters in the output stream are:
'      ' 49,800.20%
'      Line 500 of 500 written: 49,900.20%
'
'
'      Error stream: Successfully wrote 500 lines.

The following example shows how to read from a redirected error stream and wait for the child process to exit. It avoids a deadlock condition by calling p.StandardError.ReadToEnd before p.WaitForExit. A deadlock condition can result if the parent process calls p.WaitForExit before p.StandardError.ReadToEnd and the child process writes enough text to fill the redirected stream. The parent process would wait indefinitely for the child process to exit. The child process would wait indefinitely for the parent to read from the full StandardError stream.

using System;
using System.Diagnostics;

public class Example
{
   public static void Main()
   {
      var p = new Process();  
      p.StartInfo.UseShellExecute = false;  
      p.StartInfo.RedirectStandardError = true;  
      p.StartInfo.FileName = "Write500Lines.exe";  
      p.Start();  

      // To avoid deadlocks, always read the output stream first and then wait.  
      string output = p.StandardError.ReadToEnd();  
      p.WaitForExit();

      Console.WriteLine($"\nError stream: {output}");
   }
}
// The end of the output produced by the example includes the following:
//      Error stream:
//      Successfully wrote 500 lines.
Imports System.Diagnostics

Public Module Example
    Public Sub Main()
        Dim p As New Process()
        p.StartInfo.UseShellExecute = False  
        p.StartInfo.RedirectStandardError = True  
        p.StartInfo.FileName = "Write500Lines.exe"  
        p.Start() 

        ' To avoid deadlocks, always read the output stream first and then wait.  
        Dim output As String = p.StandardError.ReadToEnd()  
        p.WaitForExit()

        Console.WriteLine($"{vbCrLf}Error stream: {output}")
    End Sub
End Module
' The end of the output produced by the example includes the following:
'      Error stream:
'      Successfully wrote 500 lines.

There is a similar issue when you read all text from both the standard output and standard error streams. The following C# code, for example, performs a read operation on both streams. It avoids the deadlock condition by performing asynchronous read operations on the StandardError stream. A deadlock condition results if the parent process calls p.StandardOutput.ReadToEnd followed by p.StandardError.ReadToEnd and the child process writes enough text to fill its error stream. The parent process would wait indefinitely for the child process to close its StandardOutput stream. The child process would wait indefinitely for the parent to read from the full StandardError stream.

using System;
using System.Diagnostics;

public class Example
{
   public static void Main()
   {
      var p = new Process();  
      p.StartInfo.UseShellExecute = false;  
      p.StartInfo.RedirectStandardOutput = true;  
      string eOut = null;
      p.StartInfo.RedirectStandardError = true;
      p.ErrorDataReceived += new DataReceivedEventHandler((sender, e) => 
                                 { eOut += e.Data; });
      p.StartInfo.FileName = "Write500Lines.exe";  
      p.Start();  

      // To avoid deadlocks, use an asynchronous read operation on at least one of the streams.  
      p.BeginErrorReadLine();
      string output = p.StandardOutput.ReadToEnd();  
      p.WaitForExit();

      Console.WriteLine($"The last 50 characters in the output stream are:\n'{output.Substring(output.Length - 50)}'");
      Console.WriteLine($"\nError stream: {eOut}");
   }
}
// The example displays the following output:
//      The last 50 characters in the output stream are:
//      ' 49,800.20%
//      Line 500 of 500 written: 49,900.20%
//      '
//
//      Error stream: Successfully wrote 500 lines.

Imports System.Diagnostics

Public Module Example
   Public Sub Main()
      Dim p As New Process()  
      p.StartInfo.UseShellExecute = False  
      p.StartInfo.RedirectStandardOutput = True  
      Dim eOut As String = Nothing
      p.StartInfo.RedirectStandardError = True
      AddHandler p.ErrorDataReceived, Sub(sender, e) eOut += e.Data 
      p.StartInfo.FileName = "Write500Lines.exe"  
      p.Start()  

      ' To avoid deadlocks, use an asynchronous read operation on at least one of the streams.  
      p.BeginErrorReadLine()
      Dim output As String = p.StandardOutput.ReadToEnd()  
      p.WaitForExit()

      Console.WriteLine($"The last 50 characters in the output stream are:{vbCrLf}'{output.Substring(output.Length - 50)}'")
      Console.WriteLine($"{vbCrLf}Error stream: {eOut}")
   End Sub
End Module
' The example displays the following output:
'      The last 50 characters in the output stream are:
'      ' 49,800.20%
'      Line 500 of 500 written: 49,900.20%
'      '
'
'      Error stream: Successfully wrote 500 lines.

You can use asynchronous read operations to avoid these dependencies and their deadlock potential. Alternately, you can avoid the deadlock condition by creating two threads and reading the output of each stream on a separate thread.

Applies to

See also