I executed a command like this: nohup some_command &. Now this command is in the background. I can see it with the command jobs.

Example output:

[1]+  Running                 nohup some_command &

Is it somehow possible to have a live representation of the status that comes from the jobs command, similar to how top works? So that when nohup some_command & completes, it immediately disappears from the list?

  • 1
    Have you tried watch? – Jeff Schaller Jul 26 '15 at 2:41
  • This is kind of overkill, but you could always start a shell (as root) with unshare -fp --mount-proc bash, run a bunch of things in that shell, and then run top. – user3188445 Jul 26 '15 at 6:40

If all you want is for job completion notifications to be printed immediately, even if you're at typing a prompt or if some other job is in the foreground, then just run set -o notify.

If you want a foreground command that displays the status of background jobs from the current shell, you can run jobs in a loop. It's easy to do it in full screen:

tput clear
while sleep 1; do
  tput clear

If you want to display the list below the prompt without clearing the screen, save the cursor position at the beginning and restore it on each run:

tput sc
while sleep 1; do
  tput rc
  • This is great and helps me a lot, but I would actually like something more like the top command, except for registered background jobs. Essentially a list of all active jobs that updates when the status changes. – Automatico Jul 26 '15 at 18:15
  • @Cort3z Do you mean something you'd launch in the same terminal window? Or in another terminal window? I don't understand how you want the list to be displayed and how you'd interact with it. – Gilles Jul 26 '15 at 20:16
  • Try to write top in terminal. I want the exact same thing, only it displays job status, not process status. A foreground program which has a live update of all the background jobs. – Automatico Jul 27 '15 at 2:19
  • @Cort3z Ok. I've updated my answer, I think this is what you're looking for. – Gilles Aug 3 '15 at 1:15

You can create a shell function :

myjobwatch() { while true; do jobs; sleep 2; clear; done; }

Then just execute myjobwatch

  • Wouldn't this clear the entire console? – Automatico Jul 26 '15 at 18:12

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