Store output of subprocess.Popen call in a string


Question

I'm trying to make a system call in Python and store the output to a string that I can manipulate in the Python program.

#!/usr/bin/python
import subprocess
p2 = subprocess.Popen("ntpq -p")

I've tried a few things including some of the suggestions here:

Retrieving the output of subprocess.call()

but without any luck.

1
272
5/23/2017 12:10:26 PM

Accepted Answer

In Python 2.7 or Python 3

Instead of making a Popen object directly, you can use the subprocess.check_output() function to store output of a command in a string:

from subprocess import check_output
out = check_output(["ntpq", "-p"])

In Python 2.4-2.6

Use the communicate method.

import subprocess
p = subprocess.Popen(["ntpq", "-p"], stdout=subprocess.PIPE)
out, err = p.communicate()

out is what you want.

Important note about the other answers

Note how I passed in the command. The "ntpq -p" example brings up another matter. Since Popen does not invoke the shell, you would use a list of the command and options—["ntpq", "-p"].

433
9/12/2017 9:48:09 PM

This worked for me for redirecting stdout (stderr can be handled similarly):

from subprocess import Popen, PIPE
pipe = Popen(path, stdout=PIPE)
text = pipe.communicate()[0]

If it doesn't work for you, please specify exactly the problem you're having.


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