asteri asteri - 4 days ago 7
Java Question

What are the circumstances under which a finally {} block will NOT execute?

In a Java

try{} ... catch{} ... finally{}
block, code within the
finally{}
is generally considered "guaranteed" to run regardless of what occurs in the try/catch. However, I know of at least two circumstances under which it will not execute:


  • If
    System.exit(0)
    is called; or,

  • if an Exception is thrown all the way up to the JVM and the default behavior occurs (i.e.,
    printStackTrace()
    and exit)



Are there any other program behaviors that will prevent the code in a
finally{}
block from executing? Under what specific conditions will the code execute or not?

EDIT: As NullUserException pointed out, the second case is actually not true. I thought it was because the text in standard error printed after that in standard out, preventing the text from being seen without scrolling up. :) Apologies.

Answer

If you call System.exit() the program exits immediately without finally being called.

A JVM Crash e.g. Segmentation Fault, will also prevent finally being called. i.e. the JVM stops immediately at this point and produces a crash report.

An infinite loop would also prevent a finally being called.

The finally block is always called when a Throwable is thrown. Even if you call Thread.stop() which triggers a ThreadDeath to be thrown in the target thread. This can be caught (it's an Error) and the finally block will be called.


public static void main(String[] args) {
    testOutOfMemoryError();
    testThreadInterrupted();
    testThreadStop();
    testStackOverflow();
}

private static void testThreadStop() {
    try {
        try {
            final Thread thread = Thread.currentThread();
            new Thread(new Runnable() {
                @Override
                public void run() {
                    thread.stop();
                }
            }).start();
            while(true)
                Thread.sleep(1000);
        } finally {
            System.out.print("finally called after ");
        }
    } catch (Throwable t) {
        System.out.println(t);
    }
}

private static void testThreadInterrupted() {
    try {
        try {
            final Thread thread = Thread.currentThread();
            new Thread(new Runnable() {
                @Override
                public void run() {
                    thread.interrupt();
                }
            }).start();
            while(true)
                Thread.sleep(1000);
        } finally {
            System.out.print("finally called after ");
        }
    } catch (Throwable t) {
        System.out.println(t);
    }
}

private static void testOutOfMemoryError() {
    try {
        try {
            List<byte[]> bytes = new ArrayList<byte[]>();
            while(true)
                bytes.add(new byte[8*1024*1024]);
        } finally {
            System.out.print("finally called after ");
        }
    } catch (Throwable t) {
        System.out.println(t);
    }
}

private static void testStackOverflow() {
    try {
        try {
            testStackOverflow0();
        } finally {
            System.out.print("finally called after ");
        }
    } catch (Throwable t) {
        System.out.println(t);
    }
}

private static void testStackOverflow0() {
    testStackOverflow0();
}

prints

finally called after java.lang.OutOfMemoryError: Java heap space
finally called after java.lang.InterruptedException: sleep interrupted
finally called after java.lang.ThreadDeath
finally called after java.lang.StackOverflowError

Note: in each case the thread kept running, even after SO, OOME, Interrupted and Thread.stop()!

Comments