Error handling

This covers how Wookie handles errors.

Listener's event-cb

Error handling in Wookie is done by passing an event/error handler function to your listener on instantiation:

(make-instance 'listener :port 8181 :event-cb 'my-app-error-handler)

The handler is a function of two arguments, the event/error object that was caught and the cl-async socket we're processing on. You can grab the request/response objects out of the socket using cl-async's socket-data accessor:

(defun my-app-error-handler (err sock)
  (let* ((sockdata (when sock (as:socket-data sock)))
         (response (getf sockdata :response))
         (request (when response (response-request response))))

Any errors caught by Wookie during normal operation will be handed to the given event handler. If a handler is not specified, Wookie will take some default actions with the caught error (such as send an HTTP 500 response).

Note that it's possible for errors to occur in your app that Wookie will not catch, for instance:

(defroute (:get "/") (req res)
  (as:with-delay ()
    (error "wookie will not catch this")))

In such cases, you will want to pass an error handler to cl-async's :catch-app-errors startup keyword:

(as:with-event-loop (:catch-app-errors (lambda (ev) (my-app-error-handler ev nil)))


This is a veriable defined in the wookie-config package that basically tells Wookie if it encounters an error, let the error pass through to the debugger... don't try to catch it and hand it off to the listener's event-cb.

This can be really useful for apps being developed locally in debug mode because you'll get full stack traces for your errors:

(let ((wookie-config:*debug-on-error* t)
      (blackbird:*debug-on-error* t))
  ;; notice we omit :catch-app-errors here
  (as:with-event-loop ()
    (start-server (make-instance 'listener :port 80))))

Notice that this pairs very will with setting blackbird and cl-async into pass-through mode as well.