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How to find out what process is using CPU to what extent in Ubuntu? I'd like to have real-time data as well as recorded history. Both console and GUI apps would be great.

The situation is that my system seems to be really overloaded right now and I don't know why for sure. I've spent some time killing processes and watching if performance improves. And I suspect that JS Scripts running in Mozilla are causing problems. All in all a nice tool for taking a look at CPU usage would come in handy.

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6 Answers

up vote 11 down vote accepted

Tried Htop ?

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Yep, great tool, exactly what I needed. –  Alex Sep 3 '09 at 13:27
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Learn to use "sar", you'll be glad you did.

Install the "sysstat" package. It will record tons of useful system statistics, CPU, memory usage, I/O, and more. The default retention period is 7 days I believe.

Then you can go back in time for the day you want like this (for the 2nd, for example):

sar -C -f /var/log/sysstat/sa02

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top will give you real time data. Recorded may be more tricky.

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There are many tools you may use : dstat, vmstat, htop, ps ..

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Since this is a desktop you can also use the system monitor in gnome or kde. Both will list the processes similar to the Windows Task Manager.

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Use SeaLion. The default command lists has top -b -n1 which will do exactly what you are looking for. It has real-time data as well as recorded history.

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