Exceptions

This guide is only about User-Exceptions - System-Errors are usually fatal and should never be caught.

Catching Exceptions

A common case for exceptions is to validate potentially invalid user input. Once an exception is thrown, the stack will be unwound until the first matching exception handler is found.

try
{
    readText("dummyFile");
}
catch (FileException e)
{
    // ...
}

It's possible to have multiple catch blocks and a finally block that is executed regardless of whether an error occurred. Exceptions are thrown with throw.

try
{
    throw new StringException("You shall not pass.");
}
catch (FileException e)
{
    // ...
}
catch (StringException e)
{
    // ...
}
finally
{
    // ...
}

Remember that the scope guard is usually a better solution to the try-finally pattern.

Custom exceptions

One can easily inherit from Exception and create custom exceptions:

class UserNotFoundException : Exception
{
    this(string msg, string file = __FILE__, size_t line = __LINE__) {
        super(msg, file, line);
    }
}
throw new UserNotFoundException("D-Man is on vacation");

Enter a safe world with nothrow

The D compiler can ensure that a function can't cause catastrophic side-effects. Such functions can be annotated with the nothrow keyword. The D compiler statically forbids throwing exceptions in nothrow functions.

bool lessThan(int a, int b) nothrow
{
    writeln("unsafe world"); // output can throw exceptions, thus this is forbidden
    return a < b;
}

Please note that the compiler is able to infer attributes for templated code automatically.

std.exception

It is important to avoid contract programming for user-input as the contracts are removed when compiled in release mode. For convenience std.exception provides enforce that can be used like assert, but throws Exceptions instead of an AssertError.

import std.exception : enforce;
float magic = 1_000_000_000;
enforce(magic + 42 - magic == 42, "Floating-point math is fun");

// throw custom exceptions
enforce!StringException('a' != 'A', "Case-sensitive algorithm");

However there's more in std.exception. For example when the error might not be fatal, one can opt-in to collect it:

import std.exception : collectException;
auto e = collectException(aDangerousOperation());
if (e)
    writeln("The dangerous operation failed with ", e);

To test whether an exception is thrown in tests, use assertThrown.

In-depth

rdmd playground.d

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