Tcl_Panic man page

Tcl_Panic, Tcl_PanicVA, Tcl_SetPanicProc — report fatal error and abort


#include <tcl.h>

Tcl_Panic(format, arg, arg, ...)

Tcl_PanicVA(format, argList)



const char* format (in)
A printf-style format string.
arg (in)
Arguments matching the format string.
va_list argList (in)
An argument list of arguments matching the format string. Must have been initialized using va_start, and cleared using va_end.
Tcl_PanicProc *panicProc (in)
Procedure to report fatal error message and abort.


When the Tcl library detects that its internal data structures are in an inconsistent state, or that its C procedures have been called in a manner inconsistent with their documentation, it calls Tcl_Panic to display a message describing the error and abort the process. The format argument is a format string describing how to format the remaining arguments arg into an error message, according to the same formatting rules used by the printf family of functions. The same formatting rules are also used by the built-in Tcl command format.

In a freshly loaded Tcl library, Tcl_Panic prints the formatted error message to the standard error file of the process, and then calls abort to terminate the process. Tcl_Panic does not return. On Windows, when a debugger is running, the formatted error message is sent to the debugger in stead. If the windows executable does not have a stderr channel (e.g. wish.exe), then a system dialog box is used to display the panic message.

Tcl_SetPanicProc may be used to modify the behavior of Tcl_Panic. The panicProc argument should match the type Tcl_PanicProc:

typedef void Tcl_PanicProc(
        const char *format,
        arg, arg,...);

After Tcl_SetPanicProc returns, any future calls to Tcl_Panic will call panicProc, passing along the format and arg arguments. panicProc should avoid making calls into the Tcl library, or into other libraries that may call the Tcl library, since the original call to Tcl_Panic indicates the Tcl library is not in a state of reliable operation.

The typical use of Tcl_SetPanicProc arranges for the error message to be displayed or reported in a manner more suitable for the application or the platform.

Although the primary callers of Tcl_Panic are the procedures of the Tcl library, Tcl_Panic is a public function and may be called by any extension or application that wishes to abort the process and have a panic message displayed the same way that panic messages from Tcl will be displayed.

Tcl_PanicVA is the same as Tcl_Panic except that instead of taking a variable number of arguments it takes an argument list.

See Also

abort(3), printf(3), exec(n), format(n)


abort, fatal, error

Referenced By

Explore man page connections for Tcl_Panic(3).

Tcl_PanicVA(3) and Tcl_SetPanicProc(3) are aliases of Tcl_Panic(3).

Tcl 8.4 Tcl Library Procedures