Mac OS Terminal’s load average feedback

November 4th, 2009 by Leandro Morgado

I discovered something by accident today which is pretty nifty.  When using Snow Leopards Terminal,  you can obtain the system’s load average with CTRL+T when a process is running. Here is an example:

shell> lmorgado$ sleep 1000
load: 0.36  cmd: sleep 19856 waiting 0.00u 0.00s
load: 0.33  cmd: sleep 19856 waiting 0.00u 0.00s

Now every time you hit CTRL+T you get the load average of the running process in the foreground:

load: 0.62  cmd: sleep 19856 waiting 0.00u 0.00s
load: 0.57  cmd: sleep 19856 waiting 0.00u 0.00s
load: 0.57  cmd: sleep 19856 waiting 0.00u 0.00s

Do you have any nifty lifty tricks up your sleeve? Feel free to share them below.