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The return code from "system" is not unreliable, you're just interpreting it backwards. It's a really easy mistake to make - the shell interprets 0 as success and nonzero as failure. So a zero return code from a system call means it succeeded. The actual return code, if nonzero, is returned in the high-order byte of the return code, so if the shell returns 1 you'll get 256. That is usually not what you care about, you just want to know did it succeed or fail. So - change "or" to "and" and you're all set. It is clearer to say: if(system(...) != 0) { die(" ... "); }

In reply to Re: Best method to capture return code from system calls? by Anonymous Monk
in thread Best method to capture return code from system calls? by bwelch

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