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268
votes
9answers
110k views

When should I not kill -9 a process?

I am always very hesitant to run kill -9, but I see other admins do it almost routinely. I figure there is probably a sensible middle ground, so: When and why should kill -9 be used? When and why ...
75
votes
2answers
8k views

How does Linux “kill” a process?

It often baffles me that, although I have been working professionally with computers for several decades and Linux for a decade, I actually treat most of the OS' functionality as a black box, not ...
33
votes
2answers
3k views

Why is the default process creation mechanism fork?

The UNIX system call for process creation, fork(), creates a child process by copying the parent process. My understanding is that this is almost always followed by a call to exec() to replace the ...
28
votes
4answers
2k views

python vs bc in evaluating 6^6^6

I am evaluating the expression 6^6^6 using python and bc separately. The content of the python file is print 6**6**6. When I execute time python test.py, I get the output as real 0m0.067s ...
21
votes
2answers
4k views

Getting a window's PID by clicking on it

Is there any package which shows PID of a window by clicking on it?
19
votes
2answers
28k views

How can I kill a <defunct> process whose parent is init?

Transmission is intermittently hanging on my NAS. If I send SIGTERM, it doesn't disappear from the process list and a <defunct> label appears next to it. If I send a SIGKILL, it still doesn't ...
18
votes
1answer
9k views

What is the maximum value of the PID of a process?

What is the maximum value of the PID of a process? Also, is it possible to change the PID of a running process?
17
votes
4answers
4k views

What happens if you edit a script during execution?

I have a general question, which might be a result of misunderstanding of how processes are handled in Linux. For my purposes I am going to define a 'script' as a snippet of bash code saved to a text ...
16
votes
2answers
714 views

How are the processes in UNIX numbered?

I can't find any pattern when I look at the numbering of PIDs in process table (ps -a), as the PIDs are not subsequent numbers and sometimes there are large "gaps" between those numbers. Is it ...
14
votes
9answers
12k views

Ensure a process is always running

I started hosting sites a while back using Cherokee. For external sources (FastCGI, etc) it has an option to launch the process if it can't find one running on the designated socket or port. This is ...
13
votes
6answers
11k views

How to make a process invisible to other users?

How could you launch a process and make it invisible to the top command? The process is started by a normal user (not root), and should not be visible to other normal users.
13
votes
4answers
1k views

Is there a top-like command that shows the network bandwidths and file accesses of running processes

For example, we'd like to see: PROCESS IF TX RX FILE(regular) R/W prog1 eth0 200kB/s 12kB/s -- -- wlan0 12kB/s 100kB/s -- ...
12
votes
1answer
18k views

What does this process STAT indicates?

If you check the STAT column in above image you will see Ss S S< SN and R+ What does this indicates ? Process states. If yes,Then what is the significance of 'Ss S< SN and R+'?
12
votes
2answers
10k views

How to Throttle per process I/O to a max limit?

I'm looking for a way to limit a processes disk io to a set speed limit. Ideally the program would work similar to this: $ limitio --pid 32423 --write-limit 1M Limiting process 32423 to 1 megabyte ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

What does a niceness value of (-) mean?

According to the man page, and wikipedia; nice ranges from -20 to 20. Yet when I run the following command, I find some processes have a non numerical value such as (-). See the sixth column from ...
12
votes
2answers
6k views

Per process firewall?

I've been reading around but can't seem to find a way to create per-process firewall rules. I know about iptables --uid-owner but that only works for outgoing traffic. I've considered scripting ...
11
votes
3answers
4k views

What's the difference between pkill and killall?

I know that pkill has more filtering rules than killall. My question is, what is the difference between: pkill [signal] name and killall [signal] name I've read that killall is more effective ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Simulate an unkillable process in D state

For catastrophe testing scenarios on out server environment we're looking for an easy way to make a process stuck in D (uninterruptible sleep) state. Any easy ways? An example C sample code would be ...
8
votes
2answers
6k views

How to check, which limit was exceeded? (Process terminated because of ulimit. )

Let's assume process runs in ulimited environment : ( ulimit ... -v ... -t ... -x 0 ... ./program ) Program is terminated. There might be many reasons : memory/time/file limit exceeded ; just ...
7
votes
4answers
8k views

'kill java' doesn't kill java

I am running debian right now and sometimes I need to kill java manually from the terminal, but when I try kill #pid# or pkill java nothing happens. No console output (ok, that's normal) and java is ...
6
votes
3answers
377 views

Undo bg; Undo putting a process into the background?

I've started a long running and machine hog process. I've hit CTRL-Z to stop it. I've then put it in the background with bg. Oops, I should have restarted with fg so that I could easily stop and start ...
6
votes
3answers
11k views

What is a command to find priority of process in Linux?

How can i view the priority of a specific process ?
6
votes
2answers
307 views

How is a graphical application started from a bash session connected to that bash session?

When I start a graphical application from a terminal running bash, that application is somehow connected to that bash session. For example, when the applications dumps some text it will appear in the ...
6
votes
2answers
104 views

Kill a suspended process?

I was slightly confused by: % vim tmp zsh: suspended vim tmp % kill %1 % jobs [1] + suspended vim tmp % kill -SIGINT %1 % jobs [1] + suspended vim tmp % kill -INT %1 % jobs [1] + suspended ...
6
votes
1answer
5k views

What does <defunct> mean in the output of ps?

I had issued the ps -ef|grep java command and this is one of the entries that I got : subhrcho 875 803 0 Jan23 pts/5 00:02:27 [java] <defunct> What is <defunct> implying here ? ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Using `kill -s 0 $pid` vs `[[ -e /proc/$pid ]]` to detect if PID is running

One of the idioms often used to check if process is running is to use kill -s 0 $pid. My question is, does it have any upsides over using [[ -e /proc/$pid ]] construct? The script I'm writing is ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

kill -9 hangs, unable to kill process (murder proof process) [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What if ‘kill -9’ does not work? I guess its a bit late to ask this, but for future reference; I was called to look at a server today after a customer was reporting ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Simple queuing system?

Given a commodity PC, we would like to use it to execute some tasks in the background round the clock. Basically, we would like to have commands like: add-task *insert command here* list-tasks ...
6
votes
2answers
185 views

Systemd and process spawning

Don't normally post here but I am ripping my hair out over this one. I have a Python script that forks when it launches, and is responsible for starting a bunch of other processes. This script used ...
5
votes
3answers
55k views

How can I see what processes are running?

I use Ubuntu Server 10.10 and I would like to see what processes are running. I know that PostgreSQL is running on my machine but I can not see it with the top or ps commands, so I assume that they ...
5
votes
2answers
336 views

Process owner vs process user (Gnome's system monitor)

Gnome's system monitor has a "User" column in the Processes tab. There's also an "Owner" column, (that seems to be hidden by default). Most of the processes have the same values on both columns. ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Why do top and ps show different PIDs for the same processes?

When I run top -H, I see that my multiple mysql threads all have the same PID. However, in ps -eLf I see each one has a different PID: ps -eLf UID PID PPID LWP C NLWP STIME TTY ...
5
votes
1answer
247 views

SIGKILLing after a grace period

I've seen a lot of process managers that try to do this. It was my understanding that you should only use SIGTERM to kill a process. The process could take an unknown amount of time to clean up after ...
5
votes
1answer
895 views

A script's background process is still alive after closing the terminal

This is more of a process management/signal handling question than a Bash question. It just uses Bash to explain the issue. I'm running a Bash script in which I run a background process. This is the ...
5
votes
2answers
187 views

How can I see i/o stats for a briefly running process?

For long running processes like init, I can do things like $ cat /proc/[pid]/io What can I do if I want to see stats for a briefly running process such as a command line utility like ls? I don't ...
5
votes
2answers
499 views

Set process exclusivity in Linux

I am trying to measure the performance of a process. I have widely ranging performance measurements on small bit of single-threaded deterministic code that should perform the same every time. I would ...
4
votes
6answers
2k views

grep invading my ps [duplicate]

When I'm checking for some process, I usually write ps aux | grep myprocess And sometimes I get the output of eimantas 11998 0.0 0.0 8816 740 pts/0 S+ 07:45 0:00 grep myprocess if ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

What happens to suspended jobs in unix?

We can issue CTRL+Z to suspend any jobs in Unix and then later on bring them back to life using fg or bg. I want to understand what happens to those jobs that are suspended like this ? Are they ...
4
votes
1answer
104 views

Is it the process that cleans itself on termination or the kernel?

Recently I found this in a powerpoint presentation: When a program is compiled and linked, the linker inserts some extra code in the program. It is this code that calls the main function about the ...
4
votes
1answer
221 views

What is the default or most commonly used multiprocessing model in Linux? Symmetric or Asymmetric?

What the multiprocessing model for Linux? Is there a default or most commonly used model? Is it similar or very different from say BSD or even the MS Windows kernel? If SMP is used normally, can ...
4
votes
3answers
111 views

Disallow File IO for a process except for FIFOs

How do you start a process that cannot do any file IO (opening / closing files, creating / deleting files, reading / writing files, etc.), except to read and write to pre-created FIFOs? (chroot will ...
4
votes
1answer
859 views

What is the difference between exiting a process via Ctrl+C vs issuing a kill -9 command?

I know I can kill any process with kill -9 command . But sometimes i see that even if I have terminated a program with CTRL+C , the process doesn't get killed . So I want to know the difference ...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

Find the process id of a java application in a bash script (to see if the target application is already running)

I know there are a million questions on getting the process ID, but this one seems to be unique. Google has not given me the answer, so I hope stackexhange will help rather than close this question. ...
4
votes
2answers
914 views

Removing zombie process from the process table

Can somebody please explain when parent process receives the exit status of a dead child process via wait, who actually reallocates the memory of the child process and removes it from the process ...
4
votes
2answers
127 views

Can I attach a GUI process to a “surrogate X server”?

I have been in a situation where my desktop has crashed and become unresponsive. (In my case it was the Cinnamon DE, and I have yet to try cinnamon --replace from the commandline, BTW) I was using a ...
4
votes
1answer
172 views

Reporting cpu hogs

Once in a while some program (ok, usually it's firefox) will start eating up nearly 100% of a processor's cpu time, heating up the processor and driving down by laptop's battery life. Since it's not ...
4
votes
1answer
211 views

Understanding when background process gets terminated

I have a script which starts a number of background processes and if works fine when called from the cmdline. However the same script is also called during my xsession startup and additionally on ...
4
votes
2answers
479 views

How can I synchronize processes started in different TMUX panes?

Consider this: tmux split-window -d program1 program2 # this program depends on some side effects produced by program1 In this case, program2 will start before program1 is ready. program1 will send ...
4
votes
1answer
189 views

Discard stdout of a command for t seconds

I am working on some batch scripts involving the following: Run some non-terminating sub-processes (asynchronously) Wait for t seconds Perform other task X for some time Terminate subprocesses ...
4
votes
1answer
70 views

How to detect a desktop application hanging

I want to write a script that will detect whether a particular desktop application is responding and kill it. Is this possible? I know I've seen the GNOME desktop put up a "Application is not ...