I'm using the pidstat to monitor the cpu usage of a process and it shows 100%. For the same process the htop or top shows 200% for the same process. The system has 16 cores, and the process i am monitoring was set to use only two cores. So the htop or top reported %CPU is correct.

I also changed the process to use only one core and in that case also pidstat shows 100% cpu and htop shows 100%

Is pidstat measures the %CPU differently?

1 Answer 1


htop shows the output number based on the (% of core #1 being used) + (% of core #2 being used) + ....

pidstat does not go by amount of core usage of each core added together, but rather the average values of the amount of core usage that app us using over the cores that it is using. Thus pidstat will never show a value greater than 100%.

  • So, when using the pidstat, knowing the number of cores that are being used by the process is important.
    – Madan
    Jun 5, 2020 at 4:23

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