Skip site navigation (1)Skip section navigation (2)

FreeBSD Man Pages

Man Page or Keyword Search:
Man Architecture
Apropos Keyword Search (all sections) Output format
home | help
PS(1)                   FreeBSD General Commands Manual                  PS(1)

NAME
     ps - process status

SYNOPSIS
     ps [-aCcefHhjlmrSTuvwXxZ] [-O fmt | -o fmt] [-G gid[,gid...]] [-M core]
        [-N system] [-p pid[,pid...]] [-t tty[,tty...]] [-U user[,user...]]
     ps [-L]

DESCRIPTION
     The ps utility displays a header line, followed by lines containing
     information about all of your processes that have controlling terminals.

     A different set of processes can be selected for display by using any
     combination of the -a, -G, -p, -T, -t, and -U options.  If more than one
     of these options are given, then ps will select all processes which are
     matched by at least one of the given options.

     For the processes which have been selected for display, ps will usually
     display one line per process.  The -H option may result in multiple
     output lines (one line per thread) for some processes.  By default all of
     these output lines are sorted first by controlling terminal, then by
     process ID.  The -m, -r, -u, and -v options will change the sort order.
     If more than one sorting option was given, then the selected processes
     will be sorted by the last sorting option which was specified.

     For the processes which have been selected for display, the information
     to display is selected based on a set of keywords (see the -L, -O, and -o
     options).  The default output format includes, for each process, the
     process' ID, controlling terminal, CPU time (including both user and
     system time), state, and associated command.

     The process file system (see procfs(5)) should be mounted when ps is
     executed, otherwise not all information will be available.

     The options are as follows:

     -a      Display information about other users' processes as well as your
             own.  This will skip any processes which do not have a
             controlling terminal, unless the -x option is also specified.
             This can be disabled by setting the security.bsd.see_other_uids
             sysctl to zero.

     -c      Change the ``command'' column output to just contain the
             executable name, rather than the full command line.

     -C      Change the way the CPU percentage is calculated by using a
             ``raw'' CPU calculation that ignores ``resident'' time (this
             normally has no effect).

     -e      Display the environment as well.

     -f      Show commandline and environment information about swapped out
             processes.  This option is honored only if the UID of the user is
             0.

     -G      Display information about processes which are running with the
             specified real group IDs.

     -H      Show all of the kernel visible threads associated with each
             process.  Depending on the threading package that is in use, this
             may show only the process, only the kernel scheduled entities, or
             all of the process threads.

     -h      Repeat the information header as often as necessary to guarantee
             one header per page of information.

     -j      Print information associated with the following keywords: user,
             pid, ppid, pgid, sid, jobc, state, tt, time, and command.

     -L      List the set of keywords available for the -O and -o options.

     -l      Display information associated with the following keywords: uid,
             pid, ppid, cpu, pri, nice, vsz, rss, mwchan, state, tt, time, and
             command.

     -M      Extract values associated with the name list from the specified
             core instead of the currently running system.

     -m      Sort by memory usage, instead of the combination of controlling
             terminal and process ID.

     -N      Extract the name list from the specified system instead of the
             default, which is the kernel image the system has booted from.

     -O      Add the information associated with the space or comma separated
             list of keywords specified, after the process ID, in the default
             information display.  Keywords may be appended with an equals
             (`=') sign and a string.  This causes the printed header to use
             the specified string instead of the standard header.

     -o      Display information associated with the space or comma separated
             list of keywords specified.  The last keyword in the list may be
             appended with an equals (`=') sign and a string that spans the
             rest of the argument and can contain space and comma characters.
             This causes the printed header to use the specified string
             instead of the standard header.  Multiple keywords may also be
             given in the form of more than one -o option.  So the header
             texts for multiple keywords can be changed.  If all keywords have
             empty header texts, no header line is written.

     -p      Display information about processes which match the specified
             process IDs.

     -r      Sort by current CPU usage, instead of the combination of
             controlling terminal and process ID.

     -S      Change the way the process time is calculated by summing all
             exited children to their parent process.

     -T      Display information about processes attached to the device
             associated with the standard input.

     -t      Display information about processes attached to the specified
             terminal devices.

     -U      Display the processes belonging to the specified usernames.

     -u      Display information associated with the following keywords: user,
             pid, %cpu, %mem, vsz, rss, tt, state, start, time, and command.
             The -u option implies the -r option.

     -v      Display information associated with the following keywords: pid,
             state, time, sl, re, pagein, vsz, rss, lim, tsiz, %cpu, %mem, and
             command.  The -v option implies the -m option.

     -w      Use 132 columns to display information, instead of the default
             which is your window size.  If the -w option is specified more
             than once, ps will use as many columns as necessary without
             regard for your window size.

     -X      When displaying processes matched by other options, skip any
             processes which do not have a controlling terminal.

     -x      When displaying processes matched by other options, include
             processes which do not have a controlling terminal.  This is the
             opposite of the -X option.  If both -X and -x are specified in
             the same command, then ps will use the one which was specified
             last.

     -Z      Add mac(4) label to the list of keywords for which ps will
             display information.

     A complete list of the available keywords are listed below.  Some of
     these keywords are further specified as follows:

     %cpu      The CPU utilization of the process; this is a decaying average
               over up to a minute of previous (real) time.  Since the time
               base over which this is computed varies (since processes may be
               very young) it is possible for the sum of all %cpu fields to
               exceed 100%.

     %mem      The percentage of real memory used by this process.

     flags     The flags associated with the process as in the include file
               <sys/proc.h>:

               P_ADVLOCK           0x00001      Process may hold a POSIX
                                                advisory lock
               P_CONTROLT          0x00002      Has a controlling terminal
               P_KTHREAD           0x00004      Kernel thread
               P_NOLOAD            0x00008      Ignore during load avg
                                                calculations
               P_PPWAIT            0x00010      Parent is waiting for child to
                                                exec/exit
               P_PROFIL            0x00020      Has started profiling
               P_STOPPROF          0x00040      Has thread in requesting to
                                                stop prof
               P_SUGID             0x00100      Had set id privileges since
                                                last exec
               P_SYSTEM            0x00200      System proc: no sigs, stats or
                                                swapping
               P_SINGLE_EXIT       0x00400      Threads suspending should
                                                exit, not wait
               P_TRACED            0x00800      Debugged process being traced
               P_WAITED            0x01000      Someone is waiting for us
               P_WEXIT             0x02000      Working on exiting
               P_EXEC              0x04000      Process called exec
               P_SA                0x08000      Using scheduler activations
               P_CONTINUED         0x10000      Proc has continued from a
                                                stopped state
               P_STOPPED_SIG       0x20000      Stopped due to SIGSTOP/SIGTSTP
               P_STOPPED_TRACE     0x40000      Stopped because of tracing
               P_STOPPED_SINGLE    0x80000      Only one thread can continue
               P_PROTECTED         0x100000     Do not kill on memory
                                                overcommit
               P_SIGEVENT          0x200000     Process pending signals
                                                changed
               P_JAILED            0x1000000    Process is in jail
               P_INEXEC            0x4000000    Process is in execve()

     label     The MAC label of the process.

     lim       The soft limit on memory used, specified via a call to
               setrlimit(2).

     lstart    The exact time the command started, using the `%c' format
               described in strftime(3).

     lockname  The name of the lock that the process is currently blocked on.
               If the name is invalid or unknown, then ``???'' is displayed.

     logname   The login name associated with the session the process is in
               (see getlogin(2)).

     mwchan    The event name if the process is blocked normally, or the lock
               name if the process is blocked on a lock.  See the wchan and
               lockname keywords for details.

     nice      The process scheduling increment (see setpriority(2)).

     rss       the real memory (resident set) size of the process (in 1024
               byte units).

     start     The time the command started.  If the command started less than
               24 hours ago, the start time is displayed using the
               ``%l:ps.1p'' format described in strftime(3).  If the command
               started less than 7 days ago, the start time is displayed using
               the ``%a6.15p'' format.  Otherwise, the start time is displayed
               using the ``%e%b%y'' format.

     state     The state is given by a sequence of characters, for example,
               ``RWNA''.  The first character indicates the run state of the
               process:

               D       Marks a process in disk (or other short term,
                       uninterruptible) wait.
               I       Marks a process that is idle (sleeping for longer than
                       about 20 seconds).
               L       Marks a process that is waiting to acquire a lock.
               R       Marks a runnable process.
               S       Marks a process that is sleeping for less than about 20
                       seconds.
               T       Marks a stopped process.
               W       Marks an idle interrupt thread.
               Z       Marks a dead process (a ``zombie'').

               Additional characters after these, if any, indicate additional
               state information:

               +       The process is in the foreground process group of its
                       control terminal.
               <       The process has raised CPU scheduling priority.
               E       The process is trying to exit.
               J       Marks a process which is in jail(2).  The hostname of
                       the prison can be found in /proc/<pid>/status.
               L       The process has pages locked in core (for example, for
                       raw I/O).
               N       The process has reduced CPU scheduling priority (see
                       setpriority(2)).
               s       The process is a session leader.
               V       The process is suspended during a vfork(2).
               W       The process is swapped out.
               X       The process is being traced or debugged.

     tt        An abbreviation for the pathname of the controlling terminal,
               if any.  The abbreviation consists of the three letters
               following /dev/tty, or, for the console, ``con''.  This is
               followed by a `-' if the process can no longer reach that
               controlling terminal (i.e., it has been revoked).

     wchan     The event (an address in the system) on which a process waits.
               When printed numerically, the initial part of the address is
               trimmed off and the result is printed in hex, for example,
               0x80324000 prints as 324000.

     When printing using the command keyword, a process that has exited and
     has a parent that has not yet waited for the process (in other words, a
     zombie) is listed as ``<defunct>'', and a process which is blocked while
     trying to exit is listed as ``<exiting>''.  If the arguments cannot be
     located (usually because it has not been set, as is the case of system
     processes and/or kernel threads) the command name is printed within
     square brackets.  The ps utility first tries to obtain the arguments
     cached by the kernel (if they were shorter than the value of the
     kern.ps_arg_cache_limit sysctl).  The process can change the arguments
     shown with setproctitle(3).  Otherwise, ps makes an educated guess as to
     the file name and arguments given when the process was created by
     examining memory or the swap area.  The method is inherently somewhat
     unreliable and in any event a process is entitled to destroy this
     information.  The ucomm (accounting) keyword can, however, be depended
     on.  If the arguments are unavailable or do not agree with the ucomm
     keyword, the value for the ucomm keyword is appended to the arguments in
     parentheses.

KEYWORDS
     The following is a complete list of the available keywords and their
     meanings.  Several of them have aliases (keywords which are synonyms).

     %cpu           percentage CPU usage (alias pcpu)
     %mem           percentage memory usage (alias pmem)
     acflag         accounting flag (alias acflg)
     args           command and arguments
     comm           command
     command        command and arguments
     cpu            short-term CPU usage factor (for scheduling)
     etime          elapsed running time
     flags          the process flags, in hexadecimal (alias f)
     inblk          total blocks read (alias inblock)
     jid            jail ID
     jobc           job control count
     ktrace         tracing flags
     label          MAC label
     lim            memoryuse limit
     lockname       lock currently blocked on (as a symbolic name)
     logname        login name of user who started the session
     lstart         time started
     majflt         total page faults
     minflt         total page reclaims
     msgrcv         total messages received (reads from pipes/sockets)
     msgsnd         total messages sent (writes on pipes/sockets)
     mwchan         wait channel or lock currently blocked on
     nice           nice value (alias ni)
     nivcsw         total involuntary context switches
     nsigs          total signals taken (alias nsignals)
     nswap          total swaps in/out
     nvcsw          total voluntary context switches
     nwchan         wait channel (as an address)
     oublk          total blocks written (alias oublock)
     paddr          swap address
     pagein         pageins (same as majflt)
     pgid           process group number
     pid            process ID
     poip           pageouts in progress
     ppid           parent process ID
     pri            scheduling priority
     re             core residency time (in seconds; 127 = infinity)
     rgid           real group ID
     rgroup         group name (from rgid)
     rlink          reverse link on run queue, or 0
     rss            resident set size
     rtprio         realtime priority (101 = not a realtime process)
     ruid           real user ID
     ruser          user name (from ruid)
     sid            session ID
     sig            pending signals (alias pending)
     sigcatch       caught signals (alias caught)
     sigignore      ignored signals (alias ignored)
     sigmask        blocked signals (alias blocked)
     sl             sleep time (in seconds; 127 = infinity)
     start          time started
     state          symbolic process state (alias stat)
     svgid          saved gid from a setgid executable
     svuid          saved UID from a setuid executable
     tdev           control terminal device number
     time           accumulated CPU time, user + system (alias cputime)
     tpgid          control terminal process group ID
     tsid           control terminal session ID
     tsiz           text size (in Kbytes)
     tt             control terminal name (two letter abbreviation)
     tty            full name of control terminal
     uprocp         process pointer
     ucomm          name to be used for accounting
     uid            effective user ID
     upr            scheduling priority on return from system call (alias
                    usrpri)
     user           user name (from UID)
     vsz            virtual size in Kbytes (alias vsize)
     wchan          wait channel (as a symbolic name)
     xstat          exit or stop status (valid only for stopped or zombie
                    process)

ENVIRONMENT
     The following environment variables affect the execution of ps:

     COLUMNS      If set, specifies the user's preferred output width in
                  column positions.  By default, ps attempts to automatically
                  determine the terminal width.

FILES
     /boot/kernel/kernel      default system namelist
     /proc                    the mount point of procfs(5)

SEE ALSO
     kill(1), pgrep(1), pkill(1), w(1), kvm(3), strftime(3), mac(4),
     procfs(5), pstat(8), sysctl(8), mutex(9)

STANDARDS
     For historical reasons, the ps utility under FreeBSD supports a different
     set of options from what is described by IEEE Std 1003.2 (``POSIX.2''),
     and what is supported on non-BSD operating systems.

HISTORY
     The ps command appeared in Version 4 AT&T UNIX.

BUGS
     Since ps cannot run faster than the system and is run as any other
     scheduled process, the information it displays can never be exact.

     The ps utility does not correctly display argument lists containing
     multibyte characters.

FreeBSD 11.0-PRERELEASE         August 21, 2006        FreeBSD 11.0-PRERELEASE

NAME | SYNOPSIS | DESCRIPTION | KEYWORDS | ENVIRONMENT | FILES | SEE ALSO | STANDARDS | HISTORY | BUGS

Want to link to this manual page? Use this URL:
<https://www.freebsd.org/cgi/man.cgi?query=ps&sektion=1&manpath=FreeBSD+6.3-RELEASE>

home | help