Better failure messages


(Lazza) #1

Is there a way to edit the error message that comes up on the details tab of a build after a build has failed?

At the moment we only get this:


Which is not helpful at all unless you are the dev that set up CI.

The idea would be to run a script that parses the log to capture al the errors there and then replace that message with all the errors found in it.

We’re using this version at the moment Continua 1.8.1.58. Would later version already have this feature?


(Dave Sparks) #2

Hi Lazza,

The message shows the results of the expressions in the Stage Gate. There’s currently no way to edit this message apart from changing the list of expressions. The idea is that the user clicks on the stage link to find more details in the build log.

We can see how this message can be a bit technical for users. We’ll look into what we can do to improve this - perhaps this would include adding a new text area to the Stage Gate where you can enter a custom message.

Meanwhile, although the latest version does not have this feature, we would still recommend upgrading as soon as you can. There have been a lot of bug fixes and significant performance improvements, as well as other new features, since Sept 2016!


(Lazza) #3

A bit disappointed to hear that. That link only sends you to the collapsible log which is not easy enough to read.

To give you some more context, we’re looking for a way to see on the details page of the build all the actual error messages that have happened both in the build and the unit tests. At the moment the only message is “this condition at this stage failed” and that’s not helpful to our team.

To workaround this problem I need some information:

  1. Is there a way to tell CI what name to give to the log file so that it can be associated with the build “name” instead of have them all named as “log.txt”?
    The ideal solution would be to include the custom build identifier we set to the configuration variable %BuildIdentifier%.

  2. Is there an API to communicate to CI via scripting language (i.e. Python, C#, Lua, etc.)

As for the update, we’re relatively small company but with slower processes than a corporate and I don’t think the update will happen any time soon…


(Dave Sparks) #4

We agree and have lots of plans to improve the build log, including showing an error view. Note that as of v1.8.1.682 the latest error message is shown in the build log at the end of each failed action.

We also have shorter term plans to add expressions which you can use to extract error messages from the log file.

I’m not sure why you would need to do this. The log.txt file is already in a folder associated the build. The workspace folder is unique to the build and ends with the build number.

You can use the Copy action to copy it to another folder and a Rename action to rename it. You can use the expression $Build.BuildNumber$ in the New Name field to the Rename action to identify the build. If you put these actions under a Catch action, then they will run when the stage fails.

We have been working on a Rest API, but this is currently on hold until we can convert the code base to .net core. You can run external programs, PowerShell scripts or FinalBuilder scripts from build actions to read and parse the log file.

We are also a small company. Our processes are fast but with have a large feature list to implement. Note that you’ll need to upgrade to take advantage of any new features that we implement based on your requests.