Retrieving the output of


How can I get the output of a process run using

Passing a StringIO.StringIO object to stdout gives this error:

Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "<stdin>", line 1, in <module>
  File "/Library/Frameworks/Python.framework/Versions/2.6/lib/python2.6/", line 444, in call
    return Popen(*popenargs, **kwargs).wait()
  File "/Library/Frameworks/Python.framework/Versions/2.6/lib/python2.6/", line 588, in __init__
    errread, errwrite) = self._get_handles(stdin, stdout, stderr)
  File "/Library/Frameworks/Python.framework/Versions/2.6/lib/python2.6/", line 945, in _get_handles
    c2pwrite = stdout.fileno()
AttributeError: StringIO instance has no attribute "fileno"

Answer rating: 300

If you have Python version >= 2.7, you can use subprocess.check_output which basically does exactly what you want (it returns standard output as string).

Simple example (linux version, see note):

import subprocess

print subprocess.check_output(["ping", "-c", "1", ""])

Note that the ping command is using linux notation (-c for count). If you try this on Windows remember to change it to -n for same result.

As commented below you can find a more detailed explanation in this other answer.

Answer rating: 222

Output from should only be redirected to files.

You should use subprocess.Popen() instead. Then you can pass subprocess.PIPE for the stderr, stdout, and/or stdin parameters and read from the pipes by using the communicate() method:

from subprocess import Popen, PIPE

p = Popen(["program", "arg1"], stdin=PIPE, stdout=PIPE, stderr=PIPE)
output, err = p.communicate(b"input data that is passed to subprocess" stdin")
rc = p.returncode

The reasoning is that the file-like object used by must have a real file descriptor, and thus implement the fileno() method. Just using any file-like object won"t do the trick.

See here for more info.

Answer rating: 75

For python 3.5+ it is recommended that you use the run function from the subprocess module. This returns a CompletedProcess object, from which you can easily obtain the output as well as return code.

from subprocess import PIPE, run

command = ["echo", "hello"]
result = run(command, stdout=PIPE, stderr=PIPE, universal_newlines=True)
print(result.returncode, result.stdout, result.stderr)

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