Finding the right CPU stats

In the sysmon I tried

(echo $'MEM\tCMD\tCPU'
ps -Ao rss,comm,pcpu | sort -rn | head -n 10 | sed 's/\([a-z]\) \([a-z]\)/\1_\2/g' ) | awk '{printf "%-9.9s%-15.15s%6.6s\n",$1,$2,$3}'

beyond head it’s just for formatting. (and I get processes with spaces in the filename)

However, as man ps says pcpu is just process’ running time / time it spent in CPU.

Run a process at 0% for 1 hour => 0%
Peak it for 5 minutes and it will go to 1% or something. And not 100% what you really want.

Side tracking a bit… On the forums a while ago there was a post that described how to get total CPU with /proc/stat. I converted it to bash, try it out:

while sleep 1; do
eval $(awk '/^cpu /{print "idle=" $5 "; total=" $2+$3+$4+$5 }' /proc/stat)
echo -en '\r'$((100* ( ($total-$prevtotal) - ($idle-$previdle) ) / ($total - $prevtotal) ))

It will print the current percentage in the same spot.

For a per process usage there is /proc/[0-9]*/stat. It is in the same unit as the above. That means you can take the usage of the interval from above, the previous usage of the process, and use it to get a percentage of that process since the last interval. Kind of like htop.

#! /bin/bash
while true; do
memused=$(free -m | sed -n '3s/^[^0-9]*\([0-9]*\).*/\1/p')

eval $(awk '/^cpu /{print "idle=" $5 "; total=" $2+$3+$4+$5 }' /proc/stat)
echo -e "$memused\tTOTAL\t$((100*( (intervaltotal) - ($idle-$previdle) ) / (intervaltotal) ))" > /tmp/

for line in $(sed 's/ /_/2;s/)_/ /g;s/[()]//g' /proc/[0-9]*/stat 2>/dev/null | awk '{CONVFMT="%d"; print "process=" $2, ";pid=" $1 , ";proctime=" $14+$15+$16+$17, ";rss=" $24*4/1024}'); do
eval $line
echo -e "$rss\t$process\t$(( ( 100*($proctime-$prevproc) / intervaltotal ) ))" >> /tmp/
mv /tmp/ /tmp/recentcpu
sleep 5

notes: The sed line for the /proc/*/stat allows for 0 or 1 spaces in the process name. The process time is four values, I don’t know if they are the right ones to use, especially the last two. Look at man 5 ps for a definition. The rss value is in pages, for me a page turned out to be 4 bytes, I don’t know if this is standard it’s the first time I heard of it.

It outputs MB memory used (non-cached RSS mem, the good stuff) / process name / cpu% used.

It outputs to a file, so you can run it in the background and get the values from a script. For quick checking you can use:
while true; do clear; sort -rn -k 3,3 /tmp/recentcpu | head -n 10;sleep 5; done

Or with some nice formatting in your own script
(echo 'MEM CMD CPU'; sort -rn -k 3,3 /tmp/recentcpu | head -n 10) | awk '{printf "%-6.6s%-15.15s%4.4s\n",$1,$2,$3}'

I am comparing the results with htop / top / and conky. It is a bit hard to see, but it looks like htop and top are *2, and conky and the above script seem similar. May be a dual core issue? I may look at conky source to see how they get the values.

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One Response to Finding the right CPU stats

  1. procyon says:

    And if the output is a bit confusing with TOTAL appearing like an entry, you put it above the MEM CMD CPU line, add some lines too, and it will look much clearer
    sort -rn -k 3,3 /tmp/recentcpu | head -n 10 | sed '1a MEM--- CMD------------ -CPU
    ' | awk '{printf "%-6.6s%-15.15s%4.4s\n",$1,$2,$3}'

    Or even, head is redundant, just quit sed early, and secondary sorting is also possible, so you see the highest memory user with 0% CPU:

    sort -rn -k 3,3 -k 1,1 /tmp/recentcpu | sed '1a MEM--- CMD------------ -CPU
    9q' | awk '{printf "%-6.6s%-15.15s%4.4s\n",$1,$2,$3}'

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