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Calling the error function does not print the line number in r2022b

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In r2021a I can generate an error inside a function and the error message will be printed in the Command Window along with the stack trace and relevant line numbers:
error behavior in r2021a
In r2022b, the stack trace is displayed with the error line number on the caller script, but the line number error is not displayed on the callee script:
error behavior in r2022b
Please review this behavior and fix in upcoming updates.
  1 Commento
Stephen23 il 13 Giu 2023
"Please review this behavior and fix in upcoming updates."
How did this it-really-is-not-a-feature decision get past anyone who actually uses MATLAB?

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Risposta accettata

Dominik Schuster
Dominik Schuster il 14 Mar 2023
Modificato: Dominik Schuster il 14 Mar 2023
FIY, I filed a bug report on this behavior a few days ago.
I got the response as stated below. Bottom line:
It's not a bug, i'ts a feature - however Mathowrks staff themselves seems somewhat divided on the topic.
My two cents:
  • The line should be thrown as i feel the error command is used by somehwat experienced developers, usually to supply other developers with more detailed info on accidental misuse etc... So the line no. and easy acces of the relevant code area/file in the editor is certainly of help, even if only pointing out the line containing the error command.
  • Not throwing the line makes for a different workflow debugging Exceptions generated by the error command, as opposed to Exceptions thrown by Matlab itself.
  • It might be a philosophical thing, so maybe the best solution would be an optional argument that switches behavoir of the error command in this regard.
  • The workaround provided is not very satisfactory - only recommended in Workspace and does not for errors thrown from a catch block.
Excerpt of Mathworks support response:
I am writing in reference to your Technical Support Case 06092067 regarding 'error command does not throw code line to workspace'.
Thank you for coming up with this issue. However, this is an intentional change and not a bug.
The justification for the change is that the first line number/link appearing in the "Error using…" preamble is seldom, if ever, the place where the mistake was made. Most often, the mistake was with the use, or invocation, of the function that errored.
A workaround is to view the stack of the MException object. The first frame will continue to point to the throw site (line number):
>> MException.last.stack(1)
ans =
struct with fields:
file: 'D:\MatlabFiles\readFile.m'
name: 'readFile'
line: 3
Please be aware that "MException.last" should only be used from the Command Window and not within a function:
I apologize for the inconvenience this is causing on your end! There is also an existing internal request to revert that behavior. I am linking this Service Request with our internal documentation, such that you are automatically notified, if this request is considered in one of the upcoming Updates or Releases of the software.
  5 Commenti
Gabriele Gualandi
Gabriele Gualandi il 7 Nov 2023
This is inconvenient. To me, it's logical that the first thing to do in order to debug, is to start from the line generating the error!

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Più risposte (5)

William Graves
William Graves il 6 Nov 2023
Agreed this is quite annoying. It seems like, for user-defined functions, the line number should always be displayed.
As a workaround, I've been using assert(0, ...) instead of error(...). This results in a printout like this that at least shows the line number where it occurred:

John Paden
John Paden il 13 Nov 2023
The bug may not occur at the line where the failure occurs, but that line of code is almost ALWAYS helpful in figuring out what failed. I definitely hope Mathworks reverts this feature of removing the line number. I do not think it is helpful to remove potentially useful information and the line number is printed on the same line as the filename so it does not even clutter the output. It is so nice to be able to just click on the line number and have it jump directly to where the error occurred.

Rik il 29 Set 2022
I personally use my own customized versions of error and warning. They take an options struct as the first argument to determine where the message should be printed.
options = struct('fid',1); % Print to command window.
this is a function [2022-09-29 07:37:44] Error: This generates an error > In a_test (line 3) In call_a_test (line 2) In LiveEditorEvaluationHelperEeditorId (line 2) In fevalMatlab (line 0) In fevalJSON (line 0)
Error using a_test
This generates an error

Error in call_a_test (line 2)

Error in solution (line 2)
The intention is that the printed text is stable across all versions of Matlab and Octave. I know this is not exactly the solution you're looking for, but it might be useful to you nonetheless.
(Note that what you perceive as a bug might be an intentional design choice you disagree with.)
  2 Commenti
Sergio Roche
Sergio Roche il 29 Set 2022
Thanks for sharing your implementation. I can see you are covering about 20 years of MATLAB history. I will wait and see if staff can comment on it being a design change or a bug.
Rik il 29 Set 2022
I will probably publish these functions to the file exchange at some point. If and when I do, there will be a test matrix included. It is indeed my goal to cover every version since Matlab 6.5 (which is 20 years old by now).
If my answer helped you, please consider marking it as accepted answer.
I don't know if you can expect a staff member to comment, unless you contact support explicitly. Most comments posted by staff members are posted under their own capacity, not as an official statement from Mathworks.

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Xingwang Yong
Xingwang Yong il 24 Ago 2023
Yet another un-wanted feature. The bug report says it is fixed, but in R2023a it is still there.
  1 Commento
Stephen23 il 15 Dic 2023
Not sure if the behavior is different with scripts, but this is the current behavior on this forum:
Error using solution>mytest
hello world
function mytest()
a = 1+2;
error('hello world')

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gwoo il 1 Mar 2024
I just ran into this this past week. I made a work around that would fprintf the same info, like the line number along with hyperlinks, before it rethrows the error message. I also submitted for support for it and shared this very page's link.
The response I got was interesting and in my environment, I'm not able to try it out but hopefully many of you can and provide the strong feedback Mathworks needs to hear:
As we work through these concerns, I would like to offer a recommendation that may provide some immediate relief. The MATLAB R2024a pre-release version has already reverted this functionality, restoring the display of line numbers when exceptions are triggered by the 'error()' function. While I cannot guarantee this feature will be present in the final R2024a release, testing the Prerelease could offer a temporary solution and an opportunity to provide further feedback on its implementation. You may follow the link below to download the R2024a Prerelease.
  1 Commento
Ronan Fleming
Ronan Fleming il 10 Mag 2024
Anyone who writes a lot of matlab code uses a breakpoint at the line where the error is thrown to re-run the code and debug in situ before it is too late. Removing the default option to see where the error was is daft, but not as daft as at least providing an option on the error function to turn it on or off. It should be on by default. I agree with the sentiment of Stephen:
"How did this it-really-is-not-a-feature decision get past anyone who actually uses MATLAB?"

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