[][src]Crate status

Status: An Error container for Rust.

An Error container lowers the overhead for reporting the status via Result<_, E>.

Unlike the error-wrapping pattern found in cargo and generalized in anyhow, the pattern implemented in Status comes from projects which try to address the following requirements:

  • Programmatically respond to both the Kind of status and the metadata, or Context, of the status.
  • Dealing with error-sites not knowing enough to describe the error but allowing the Context to be built gradually when unwinding where there is relevant information to add.
  • Localizing the rendered message.
  • Allowing an application to make some phrasing native to its UX.
  • Preserving all of this while passing through FFI, IPC, and RPC (TODO #1 #2).

These requirements are addressed by trading off the usability of per-site custom messages with messages built up from common building blocks. The Kind serves as a static description of the error that comes from a general, fixed collection. Describing the exact problem and tailored remediation is the responsibility of the Context which maps general, fixed keys with runtime-generated data.

Status grows with your application:


When prototyping, you tend to focus on your proof of concept and not worry about handling all corner cases or providing a clean API. status helps you with this by providing an ad-hoc Kind, Unkind, and an AdhocContext.

type Status = status::Status;
type Result<T, E = Status> = std::result::Result<T, E>;

fn read_file(path: &Path) -> Result<String> {
        .map_err(|e| {
            Status::new("Failed to read file")
                .context_with(|c| c.insert("Expected value", 5))

fn main() -> Result<(), status::TerminatingStatus> {
    let content = read_file(Path::new("Cargo.toml"))?;
    println!("{}", content);

Maturing the code

After prototyping, you probably want to start handling all the corner cases and have a more strictly defined API. You can do this by using an enum for your Kind. As you play whack-a-mole in cleaning up error handling, you might want to still allow some ad-hoc Kinds.

#[derive(Copy, Clone, Debug, derive_more::Display, derive_more::From)]
enum ErrorKind {
  #[display(fmt = "Failed to parse")]
  #[display(fmt = "{}", "_0")]
  __Other(&'static str),
type Status = status::Status<ErrorKind>;
type Result<T, E = Status> = std::result::Result<T, E>;

fn read_file(path: &Path) -> Result<String, Status> {
        .map_err(|e| {
            Status::new("Failed to read file").with_internal(e)

And once you are done, you might choose to remove ErrorKind::__Other completely:

#[derive(Copy, Clone, Debug, derive_more::Display)]
enum ErrorKind {
  #[display(fmt = "Failed to read file")]
  #[display(fmt = "Failed to parse")]
fn read_file(path: &Path) -> Result<String, Status> {
        .map_err(|e| {

The same progressions happens with Context, from AdhocContext to hand-written Context.


Why Status?

For an "error" crate that wanted to focus on the programmatic use-case, the typical synonyms for "error" were too strong because one man's error is another man's expected case. For example, you might have a case where you need to silence some "errors" and move on.

When should my Kind be an enum or an error code?

In the above examples, enums were used when maturing the code but error codes still have a place.


  • Strictly typed

Error codes:

  • FFI, IPC, and RPC between binaries with different iterations of the error codes.
  • Localizaton: An approach to localization is lookup tables. Keeping them separate from the application allows updating them without recompiling.
  • Interoperating with an ecosystem standardized on an error code system (like HRESULT).

When using error codes, be sure to wrap them in a newtype to avoid mixing meanings.



Return early with an error.


Return early with an error if a condition is not satisfied.



Adhoc Context.


Iterator of a chain of source errors.


View of Status, exposing implementation details.


No context needed.


A container for use in Result<_, Status>..


For use with main


Adhoc Kind.



Trait alias for values in a AdhocContext


Adds nuance to errors.


Trait alias for types that programmatically specify the status.


Modify the Status inline for error handling.