ps – command


ps – report process status


ps [options]


ps gives a snapshot of the current processes. If you want a repetitive update of this status, use top. This man page documents the /proc-based version of ps, or tries to.


This version of ps accepts several kinds of options.

Unix98 options may be grouped and must be preceeded by a dash.
BSD options may be grouped and must not be used with a dash.
GNU long options are preceeded by two dashes.

Options of different types may be freely mixed.

Set the I_WANT_A_BROKEN_PS environment variable to force BSD syntax even when options are preceeded by a dash. The PS_PERSONALITY environment variable (described below) provides more detailed control of ps behavior.


Switch Description
-A select all processes
-N negate selection
-a select all with a tty except session leaders
-d select all, but omit session leaders
-e select all processes
T select all processes on this terminal
a select all processes on a terminal, including those of other users
g really all, even group leaders (does nothing w/o SunOS settings)
r restrict output to running processes
x select processes without controlling ttys
–deselect negate selection


Switch Description
-C select by command name
-G select by RGID (supports names)
-U select by RUID (supports names)
-g select by session leader OR by group name
-p select by PID
-s select processes belonging to the sessions given
-t select by tty
-u select by effective user ID (supports names)
U select processes for specified users
p select by process ID
t select by tty
–Group select by real group name or ID
–User select by real user name or ID
–group select by effective group name or ID
–pid select by process ID
–sid select by session ID
–tty select by terminal
–user select by effective user name or ID
-123 implied –sid
123 implied –pid


Switch Description
-O is preloaded “-o”
-c different scheduler info for -l option
-f does full listing
-j jobs format
-l long format
-o user-defined format
-y do not show flags; show rss in place of addr
O is preloaded “o” (overloaded)
X old Linux i386 register format
j job control format
l display long format
o specify user-defined format
s display signal format
u display user-oriented format
v display virtual memory format
–format user-defined format


Switch Description
-H show process hierarchy (forest)
-m show all threads
-n set namelist file
-w wide output
C use raw CPU time for %CPU instead of decaying average
N specify namelist file
O sorting order (overloaded)
S include some dead child process data (as a sum with the parent)
c true command name
e show environment after the command
f ASCII-art process hierarchy (forest)
h do not print header lines (repeat header lines in BSD personality)
m all threads
n numeric output for WCHAN and USER
w wide output
–cols set screen width
–columns set screen width
–cumulative include some dead child process data (as a sum with the parent)
–forest ASCII art process tree
–html HTML escaped output
–headers repeat header lines
–no-headers print no header line at all
–lines set screen height
–nul unjustified output with NULs
–null unjustified output with NULs
–rows set screen height
–sort specify sorting order
–width set screen width
–zero unjustified output with NULs


Switch Description
-V print version
L list all format specifiers
V show version info
–help print help message
–info print debugging info
–version print version


Switch Description
A increase the argument space (DecUnix)
M use alternate core (try -n or N instead)
W get swap info from … not /dev/drum (try -n or N instead)
k use /vmcore as c-dumpfile (try -n or N instead)

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