The Great and Terrible implementation of MPI-2

function index


Set the error handler for a communicator
int MPI_Comm_set_errhandler(
  MPI_Comm comm,
  MPI_Errhandler errhandler


[in] communicator (handle)
[in] new error handler for communicator (handle)


Attaches a new error handler to a communicator. The error handler must be either a predefined error handler (MPI_ERRORS_RETURN, MPI_ERRORS_ARE_FATAL), or an error handler created by a call to MPI_COMM_CREATE_ERRHANDLER. This call is identical to MPI_ERRHANDLER_SET, whose use is deprecated.

Thread and Interrupt Safety

This routine is thread and interrupt safe only if no MPI routine that updates or frees the same MPI object may be called concurrently with this routine.

The MPI standard defined a thread-safe interface but this does not mean that all routines may be called without any thread locks. For example, two threads must not attempt to change the contents of the same MPI_Info object concurrently. The user is responsible in this case for using some mechanism, such as thread locks, to ensure that only one thread at a time makes use of this routine.

Notes for Fortran

All MPI routines in Fortran (except for MPI_WTIME and MPI_WTICK) have an additional argument ierr at the end of the argument list. ierr is an integer and has the same meaning as the return value of the routine in C. In Fortran, MPI routines are subroutines, and are invoked with the call statement.

All MPI objects (e.g., MPI_Datatype, MPI_Comm) are of type INTEGER in Fortran.


All MPI routines (except MPI_Wtime and MPI_Wtick) return an error value; C routines as the value of the function and Fortran routines in the last argument. Before the value is returned, the current MPI error handler is called. By default, this error handler aborts the MPI job. The error handler may be changed with MPI_Comm_set_errhandler (for communicators), MPI_File_set_errhandler (for files), and MPI_Win_set_errhandler (for RMA windows). The MPI-1 routine MPI_Errhandler_set may be used but its use is deprecated. The predefined error handler MPI_ERRORS_RETURN may be used to cause error values to be returned. Note that MPI does not guarentee that an MPI program can continue past an error; however, MPI implementations will attempt to continue whenever possible.

No error; MPI routine completed successfully.
Invalid communicator. A common error is to use a null communicator in a call (not even allowed in MPI_Comm_rank).
Other error; use MPI_Error_string to get more information about this error code.

See Also

MPI_Comm_get_errhandler, MPI_Comm_call_errhandler

Example Code

The following sample code illustrates MPI_Comm_set_errhandler.

#include "mpi.h"
#include <stdio.h>

static int calls = 0;
static int errs = 0;
static MPI_Comm mycomm;

void eh( MPI_Comm *comm, int *err, ... )
    if (*err != MPI_ERR_OTHER) {
        printf( "Unexpected error code\n" );fflush(stdout);
if (*comm != mycomm) {
        printf( "Unexpected communicator\n" );fflush(stdout);

int main( int argc, char *argv[] )
    MPI_Comm comm;
    MPI_Errhandler newerr;

    MPI_Init( &argc, &argv );
    comm = MPI_COMM_WORLD;
    mycomm = comm;
    MPI_Comm_create_errhandler( eh, &newerr );
    MPI_Comm_set_errhandler( comm, newerr );
    MPI_Comm_call_errhandler( comm, MPI_ERR_OTHER );
    MPI_Errhandler_free( &newerr );
if (calls != 1) {
        printf( "Error handler not called\n" );fflush(stdout);
return 0;