TOP(1)                                                                  TOP(1)



NAME
       top - display and update information about the top cpu processes

SYNOPSIS
       top  [ -1CISTabcinqtuv ] [ -dcount ] [ -mmode ] [ -ofield ] [ -ppid ] [
       -stime ] [ -Uusername ] [ number ]

DESCRIPTION
       Top displays the top processes on the system and  periodically  updates
       this  information.   If standard output is an intelligent terminal (see
       below) then as many processes as will fit on the  terminal  screen  are
       displayed  by  default.   Otherwise,  a  good  number of them are shown
       (around 20).  Raw cpu percentage is used to  rank  the  processes.   If
       number  is  given,  then  the  top  number  processes will be displayed
       instead of the default.

       Top makes a distinction between terminals that support  advanced  capa-
       bilities and those that do not.  This distinction affects the choice of
       defaults for certain options.  In the remainder of  this  document,  an
       "intelligent"  terminal  is  one that supports cursor addressing, clear
       screen, and clear to end of line.  Conversely, a "dumb" terminal is one
       that  does  not  support  such features.  If the output of top is redi-
       rected to a file, it acts as if it were being run on a dumb terminal.

OPTIONS
       -1, --percpustates
              Display per-cpu states on a multi-processor machine.

       -C, --color
              Turn off the use of color in the display.

       -I, --idle-procs
              Do not display idle processes.  By default,  top  displays  both
              active and idle processes.

       -S, --system-procs
              Show  system  processes  in  the display.  Normally, system pro-
              cesses such as the pager and the swapper are  not  shown.   This
              option makes them visible.

       -T, --tag-names
              List  all available color tags and the current set of tests used
              for color highlighting, then exit.

       -a, --all
              Show all processes for as long as possible.  This  is  shorthand
              for  "-d  all  all".   This  option is especially handy in batch
              mode.

       -b, -n, --batch
              Use "batch" mode.  In this mode, all input from the terminal  is
              ignored.  Interrupt characters (such as ^C and ^\) still have an
              effect.  This is the default on a dumb  terminal,  or  when  the
              output is not a terminal.

       -c, --full-commands
              Show  the full command line for each process. Default is to show
              just the command name.  This option  is  not  supported  on  all
              platforms.

       -i, --interactive
              Use  "interactive" mode.  In this mode, any input is immediately
              read for processing.  See the section on "Interactive Mode"  for
              an  explanation of which keys perform what functions.  After the
              command is processed, the screen will  immediately  be  updated,
              even  if  the  command  was  not  understood.   This mode is the
              default when standard output is an intelligent terminal.

       -q, --quick
              Renice top to -20 so that it will run faster.  This can be  used
              when  the system is being very sluggish to improve the possibil-
              ity of discovering the problem.  This option can only be used by
              root.

       -t, --threads
              Show  individual threads on separate lines.  By default, on sys-
              tems which support threading, each process is shown with a count
              of  the  number  of  threads. This option shows each thread on a
              separate line.  This option is not supported on all platforms.

       -u, --uids
              Do not take the time to map uid numbers to usernames.  Normally,
              top  will read as much of the file "/etc/passwd" as is necessary
              to map all the user id numbers it encounters into  login  names.
              This  option disables all that, while possibly decreasing execu-
              tion time.  The uid numbers are displayed instead of the  names.

       -v, --version
              Write  version  number  information  to stderr then exit immedi-
              ately.  No other processing takes  place  when  this  option  is
              used.  To see current revision information while top is running,
              use the help command "?".

       -d count, --displays count
              Show only count displays, then exit.  A display is considered to
              be  one  update  of  the screen.  This option allows the user to
              select the number of displays he wants to see before  top  auto-
              matically  exits.   Any  proper  prefix of the words "infinity",
              "maximum", or "all" can be used to indicate an  infinite  number
              of displays.  The default for intelligent terminals is infinity.
              The default for dumb terminals is 1.

       -m mode, --mode=mode
              Start the display in an alternate mode.  Some platforms  support
              multiple  process  displays  to show additional process informa-
              tion.  The value mode is a number indicating which mode to  dis-
              play.  The default is 0.  On platforms that do not have multiple
              display modes this option has no effect.

       -o field, --sort-order=field
              Sort the process display area on the specified field.  The field
              name  is  the  name  of the column as seen in the output, but in
              lower case.  Likely values are "cpu", "size", "res", and "time",
              but  may vary on different operating systems.  Note that not all
              operating systems support this option.

       -p pid, --pid=pid
              Only display the specified pid.

       -s time, --delay=time
              Set the delay between  screen  updates  to  time  seconds.   The
              default delay between updates is 5 seconds.

       -U username, --user=username
              Show  only  those processes owned by username.  This option cur-
              rently only accepts usernames and will not understand  uid  num-
              bers.

       Both count and number fields can be specified as "infinite", indicating
       that they can stretch as far as  possible.   This  is  accomplished  by
       using  any  proper  prefix  of  the  keywords "infinity", "maximum", or
       "all".  The default for count on an intelligent terminal is,  in  fact,
       infinity.

       The environment variable TOP is examined for options before the command
       line is scanned.  This enables a user to set his or her  own  defaults.
       The  number  of processes to display can also be specified in the envi-
       ronment variable TOP.  The options -C, -I, -S, and -u are actually tog-
       gles.   A  second specification of any of these options will negate the
       first.  Thus a user who has the environment variable TOP  set  to  "-I"
       may use the command "top -I" to see idle processes.

INTERACTIVE MODE
       When  top  is running in "interactive mode", it reads commands from the
       terminal and acts upon them accordingly.  In this mode, the terminal is
       put in "CBREAK", so that a character will be processed as soon as it is
       typed.  Almost always, a key will be pressed when top is  between  dis-
       plays;  that  is,  while  it is waiting for time seconds to elapse.  If
       this is the case, the command will be processed and the display will be
       updated immediately thereafter (reflecting any changes that the command
       may have specified).  This happens even if the command  was  incorrect.
       If a key is pressed while top is in the middle of updating the display,
       it will finish the update and then process the command.  Some  commands
       require  additional  information, and the user will be prompted accord-
       ingly.  While typing this information in, the  user's  erase  and  kill
       keys (as set up by the command stty) are recognized, and a newline ter-
       minates the input.  Note that a control-L (^L) always redraws the  cur-
       rent  screen and a space forces an immediate update to the screen using
       new data.

       These commands are currently recognized:

       h or ? Display a summary of the commands (help screen).  Version infor-
              mation is included in this display.

       C      Toggle the use of color in the display.

       c      Display  only  processes  whose  commands  match  the  specified
              string.  An empty string will display all processes.  This  com-
              mand is not supported on all platforms.

       d      Change  the  number of displays to show (prompt for new number).
              Remember that the next display counts as one, so typing d1  will
              make top show one final display and then immediately exit.

       f      Toggle the display of the full command line.

       H      Toggle the display of threads on separate lines.  By default, on
              systems which support threading, each process is  shown  with  a
              count  of  the number of threads. This command shows each thread
              on a separate line.  This command is not supported on all  plat-
              forms.

       i      (or I) Toggle the display of idle processes.

       k      Send  a signal ("kill" by default) to a list of processes.  This
              acts similarly to the command kill(1)).

       M      Sort display by memory usage.  Shorthand for "o size".

       m      Change to a different process display mode.  Some  systems  pro-
              vide  multiple display modes for the process display which shows
              different information.  This command toggles between the  avail-
              able modes.  This command is not supported on all platforms.

       N      Sort by process id.  Shorthand for "o pid".

       n or # Change  the  number of processes to display (prompt for new num-
              ber).

       o      Change the order in which the display is sorted.   This  command
              is  not  available on all systems.  The sort key names vary fron
              system to system but usually  include:   "cpu",  "res",  "size",
              "time".  The default is cpu.

       P      Sort by CPU usage.  Shorthand for "o cpu".

       q      Quit top.

       r      Change  the  priority (the "nice") of a list of processes.  This
              acts similarly to the command renice(8)).

       s      Change the number of seconds to delay between  displays  (prompt
              for new number).

       T      Sort by CPU time.  Shorthand for "o time".

       U      Toggle between displaying usernames and uids.

       u      Display  only processes owned by a specific username (prompt for
              username).  If the username specified is simply "+",  then  pro-
              cesses belonging to all users will be displayed.

THE DISPLAY
       The  actual  display  varies  depending on the specific variant of Unix
       that the machine is running.  This description may  not  exactly  match
       what  is  seen  by top running on this particular machine.  Differences
       are listed at the end of this manual entry.

       The top lines of the display show general information about  the  state
       of the system.  The first line shows (on some systems) the last process
       id assigned to a process, the three load averages, the  system  uptime,
       and  the  current  time.   The second line displays the total number of
       processes followed by a breakdown of processes per state.  Examples  of
       states common to Unix systems are sleeping, running, starting, stopped,
       and zombie.  The next line displays a percentage of time spent in  each
       of  the  processor  states  (typically  user,  nice,  system, idle, and
       iowait).  These percentages show the processor activity during the time
       since  the  last update.  For multi-processor systems, this information
       is a summation of time across all processors.  The next line shows ker-
       nel-related activity (not available on all systems).  The numbers shown
       on this line are per-second rates sampled since the last  update.   The
       exact  information  displayed varies between systems, but some examples
       are: context switches, interrupts, traps, forks, and page faults.   The
       last  one  or  two  lines  show  a summary of memory and swap activity.
       These lines vary between systems.

       The remainder of the screen displays information about individual  pro-
       cesses.   This  display  is  similar  in  spirit to ps(1) but it is not
       exactly the same.  The columns displayed by top  will  differ  slightly
       between  operating  systems.   Generally, the following fields are dis-
       played:

       PID    The process id.

       USERNAME
              Username of the process's owner (if -u is specified, a UID  col-
              umn will be substituted for USERNAME).

       THR    The  number of threads in the processes (this column may also be
              labeled NLWP).

       PRI    Current priority of the process.

       NICE   Nice amount in the range -20 to 20, as established by the use of
              the command nice.

       SIZE   Total size of the process (text, data, and stack) given in kilo-
              bytes.

       RES    Resident memory: current amount of process memory  that  resides
              in physical memory, given in kilobytes.

       STATE  Current  state  (typically one of "sleep", "run", "idl", "zomb",
              or "stop").

       TIME   Number of system and user cpu seconds that the process has used.

       CPU    Percentage of available cpu time used by this process.

       COMMAND
              Name of the command that the process is currently running.

COLOR
       Top  supports the use of ANSI color in its output. By default, color is
       available but not used.  The environment variable  TOPCOLORS  specifies
       colors  to  use  and  conditions for which they should be used.  At the
       present time, only numbers in the summay display area can  be  colored.
       In  a  future  version  it will be possible to highlight numbers in the
       process display area as well.  The environment variable is the only way
       to  specify  color:  there  is no equivalent command line option.  Note
       that the  environment  variable  TOPCOLOURS  is  also  understood.  The
       British spelling takes precedence.  The use of color only works on ter-
       minals that understand and process ANSI color escape sequences.

       The environment variable is a sequence of color  specifications,  sepa-
       rated  by  colons.  Each  specification takes the form tag=min,max#code
       where tag is the name of the value to check,  min  and  max  specify  a
       range  for  the  value, and code is an ANSI color code.  Multiple color
       codes can be listed and separated  with  semi-colons.   A  missing  min
       implies the lowest possible value (usually 0) and a missing max implies
       infinity. The comma must always be present. When specifying numbers for
       load  averages,  they  should  be  multiplied by 100.  For example, the
       specification 1min=500,1000#31 indicates that a 1 minute  load  average
       between  5  and  10 should be displayed in red. Color attributes can be
       combined.  For example, the  specification  5min=1000,#37;41  indicates
       that  a  5  minute load average higher than 10 should be displayed with
       white characters on a red background. A special  tag  named  header  is
       used to control the color of the header for process display.  It should
       be specified with no lower and  upper  limits,  specifically  header=,#
       followed by the ANSI color code.

       You  can  see  a list of color codes recognized by this installation of
       top with the -T option.  This will also show the current set  of  tests
       used for color highligting, as specified in the environment.

AUTHOR
       William LeFebvre

ENVIRONMENT
       TOP       user-configurable   defaults  for  options.   TOPCOLORS color
       specification

BUGS
       As with ps(1), things can change while top  is  collecting  information
       for  an  update.  The picture it gives is only a close approximation to
       reality.

SEE ALSO
       kill(1), ps(1), stty(1), mem(4), renice(8)


COPYRIGHT
       Copyright (C) 1984-2007  William  LeFebvre.  For  additional  licensing
       information, see http://www.unixtop.org/license/



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