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When debugging I often use killall to kill a process. This is really a bad habit because there might be more processes running of the same name on the system.

Normally the process I want to kill is a descendant from the same parent (or grandparent) as killall is started from. Often I want to kill a program started in the same terminal or a terminal in another tab (in Konsole).

Is there a way to tell killall (or another killer) to limit the scope to processes started from this terminal or processes that are descendants from the same (grand)parent?

  • Would this be an acceptable alternative? ps selects processes at the terminal scope by default, which could then be piped to xargs kill. – Haxiel Nov 22 '18 at 9:40
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If you want to kill all processes from this session (processes which have the current tty as their controlling terminal):

tty=`tty`; pkill -t "${tty#/dev/}"

Or even simpler:

pkill -s 0

According to pkill(1):

-s, --session sid,...

 Only match processes whose process session ID is  listed.   Ses-
 sion ID 0 is translated into pgrep's or pkill's own session ID.

Both the -t and the -s options could be combined (ANDed) with a pattern and other options, eg. pgrep -s0 -x foo for the processes from this session named exactly foo. Unfortunately, neither pgrep nor pkill support complex, tcpdump-style predicates.

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