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indexterm:[system information,processes,currently running]indexterm:[top] The [command]#top# command displays a real-time list of processes that are running on the system. It also displays additional information about the system uptime, current CPU and memory usage, or total number of running processes, and allows you to perform actions such as sorting the list or killing a process.
For each listed process, the [command]#top# command displays the process ID (`PID`), the effective username of the process owner (`USER`), the priority (`PR`), the nice value (`NI`), the amount of virtual memory the process uses (`VIRT`), the amount of non-swapped physical memory the process uses (`RES`), the amount of shared memory the process uses (`SHR`), the percentage of the CPU (`%CPU`) and memory (`%MEM`) usage, the cumulated CPU time (`TIME+`), and the name of the executable file (`COMMAND`). For example:
xref:System_Monitoring_Tools.adoc#interactive-top-command[Interactive top commands] contains useful interactive commands that you can use with [command]#top#. For more information, refer to the *top*(1) manual page.
Interactive top commands
|Command|Description
|kbd:[Enter], kbd:[Space]|Immediately refreshes the display.
|kbd:[h], kbd:[?]|Displays a help screen.
|kbd:[k]|Kills a process. You are prompted for the process ID and the signal to send to it.
|kbd:[n]|Changes the number of displayed processes. You are prompted to enter the number.
|kbd:[u]|Sorts the list by user.
|kbd:[M]|Sorts the list by memory usage.
|kbd:[P]|Sorts the list by CPU usage.
|kbd:[q]|Terminates the utility and returns to the shell prompt.
Using the System Monitor Tool
indexterm:[gnome-system-monitor]indexterm:[System Monitor] The `Processes` tab of the [application]*System Monitor* tool allows you to view, search for, change the priority of, and kill processes from the graphical user interface.
To start the [application]*System Monitor* tool, either select menu:Applications[System Tools > `System Monitor`pass:attributes[{blank}]] from the Activities menu, or type [command]#gnome-system-monitor# at a shell prompt. Then click the `Processes` tab to view the list of running processes.
System Monitor — Processes
The Processes tab of the System Monitor application.
system-monitor-processes.png
For each listed process, the [application]*System Monitor* tool displays its name (`Process Name`), current status (`Status`), percentage of the memory usage (`% CPU`), nice value (`Nice`), process ID (`ID`), memory usage (`Memory`), the channel the process is waiting in (`Waiting Channel`), and additional details about the session (`Session`). To sort the information by a specific column in ascending order, click the name of that column. Click the name of the column again to toggle the sort between ascending and descending order.
By default, the [application]*System Monitor* tool displays a list of processes that are owned by the current user. Selecting various options from the View menu allows you to:
view only active processes,
view all processes,
view your processes,
view process dependencies,
view a memory map of a selected process,
view the files opened by a selected process, and
refresh the list of processes.