I've started downloading large file (~30GB) on RedHat Linux using wget via SSH. Then I decided to interrupt it, so I pressed Ctrl+C. But suddenly it hanged. So I just closed the SSH connection. When I relogged into the system, I've found that this wget process isn't dead:

 PID USER      PR  NI  VIRT  RES  SHR S %CPU %MEM    TIME+  COMMAND                                                                                        
 14834 me   20   0     0    0    0 R 100.0  0.0  22:36.96 wget

So I've tried to execute kill -9 14834, but it didn't help, despite the process has R status. As far as I understand it's normal status for the process to be killed: it's neither zombie, nor uninterruptable. But why it can't be killed then?

P.S. As an another symptom I noticed that I can't ls or du the folder, where the downloading was initiated: listing hangs and I have to restart the SSH session. Can it be related to the problem above?

1 Answer 1


An unkillable process in state R is either a kernel bug or a hardware fault.

This shouldn't happen, so there is no “legitimate” way to stop it. kill -9 is as hard as it gets. To find a reliable way of stopping it, you'd need to figure out what the bug is (if it's a software bug) or how the fault affected the system (if it's a hardware fault).

The most fragile part in a PC is the RAM, so do run a memory test. And make sure that your kernel is up-to-date with the latest available bug fixes.

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