How To Stop Python Script

Python scripts are essential in automating tasks and performing various operations. However, there are situations when you need to stop the script either to prevent it from running endlessly or to address a specific issue. In this blog post, we’ll explore different methods to stop a Python script gracefully.

1. Keyboard Interrupts

One of the simplest ways to stop a Python script is by using a keyboard interrupt. By pressing Ctrl + C (or Cmd + C on macOS), you can send a signal to the Python interpreter to terminate the script immediately. This method is useful when you’re running a script from the command line and want to stop it quickly.

2. Using sys.exit()

The sys.exit() function is another way to stop a Python script. This function raises a SystemExit exception, which causes the script to halt its execution. You can use sys.exit() in combination with an if statement or an exception handler to control when the script should exit.

First, you need to import the sys module:

    import sys

Then, call the sys.exit() function when you want to stop the script:

    if some_condition:

3. Raising KeyboardInterrupt Exception

If you have a script that runs in a loop or waits for user input, you can raise a KeyboardInterrupt exception to stop it. This method simulates a user pressing Ctrl + C and mimics the behavior of a keyboard interrupt.

Here’s an example:

        while True:
            # your code here
    except KeyboardInterrupt:
        print("Stopping the script...")

4. Using a Timeout

Another way to stop a Python script is by setting a timeout. This is useful when you want your script to run for a specific duration and then stop automatically.

For this purpose, you can use the signal module:

    import signal

    def timeout_handler(signum, frame):
        print("Timeout reached, stopping the script...")

    # Set the timeout duration (in seconds)
    timeout_duration = 10

    # Register the timeout handler and set the timeout
    signal.signal(signal.SIGALRM, timeout_handler)

    # Your script's code here

In the example above, the script will automatically exit after 10 seconds.


In this blog post, we’ve covered several methods to stop a Python script, such as using keyboard interrupts, the sys.exit() function, raising a KeyboardInterrupt exception, or setting a timeout. Depending on your specific use case and the nature of your script, you can choose the most suitable method to stop your Python script gracefully.