Recently I was working on this blog in my favorite IDE: IntelliJ IDEA. This blog is a hugo site and recently I noticed that whenever I ran hugo serve locally from inside my IDE I was unable to ctrl-c out of it. I didn’t remember this being a problem the last time I was using hugo. So I did what any developer might do in this situation: cried to the internet for help.

My first stop was GitHub issues, and as if by magic I found an issue called “hugo server keeps running after CTRL+C” that looked promising; however, the issue was occurring only in Windows on “Bash on Windows” and no one else was able to reproduce it. It definitely sounded like a problem with the environment and not hugo itself. So I went back to poke at my situation some more and sure enough, when running hugo from my real terminal client everything worked as expected. There was definitely something going wrong with the embeded terminal in IDEA.

Being curious, I decided to dig a little deeper and figure out what was going on. I was definitely able to kill the process with a SIGINT which is what I expected pressing ctrl-c would send:

kill -SIGINT $(pgrep hugo)

Seeing this I figured the shell inside IDEA must be sending something other than SIGINT, but what? I wrote a quick shell script to help me figure it out:


SIGNALS=$(kill -l | grep -w -o "\S\+" | grep -v ")" | tr '\n' ' ')

setTraps() {
    for sig ; do
        trap "echo $sig" "$sig"

setTraps $SIGNALS

This script will run but block waiting for user input. Whenever the process receives a signal it will output the signal name to the command line. This script must be force killed with SIGKILL or modified to exit after every trap.

In the end, it turned out that this is a resurrected bug in IDEA’s embeded terminal and that when ctrl-c is pressed no signal is sent.

Bummer for me, but maybe this script will be useful for someone else.