In htop I would like to order processes by CPU utilization but the top processes bounce back and forth so it is difficult to view the details of each process. I would like to be able to sort in whatever preferred order then lock that order while each field continues to update.

3 Answers 3


A similar question was asked on superuser in February https://superuser.com/questions/1036978/how-pause-list-of-process-in-htop

The accepted answer is to use the -d option to change the delay of the refresh.

From the man page:

-d --delay=DELAY

Delay between updates, in tenths of seconds

e.g. htop -d 100 to refresh every 10 seconds.

Judging by this bug report there is currently no way to pause htop completely. The suggestion is again to use the -d option. https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=821904


Use Z key inside of htop. Z: pause/resume process updates (from htop help F1).

You will still be able to select and preview processes. Also memory and cpu usage will be updated as well


You can use Shift + f to follow a process in htop.

  • 1
    True, but following a process is different from "freezing a task order", right?
    – Jeff Schaller
    Feb 18 at 18:02

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