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Allow customization of the process title.

Project description

Author: Daniele Varrazzo

The library allows a process to change its title (as displayed by system tools such as ps and top).

Changing a process title is mostly useful in multi-process systems, for example when using a pool of slave workers whose job is not decided when the process is spawned, but later on, after some form of communication from the controlling process.

The procedure is hardly portable across different systems. A good implementation is provided by PostgreSQL: this module is a wrapper around its code.


You can use easy_install to install the module: to perform a system-wide installation use:

sudo easy_install setproctitle

If you are an unprivileged user or you want to limit installation to a local environment, you can use the command:

easy_install -d /target/path setproctitle

Notice that easy_install requires /target/path to be in your PYTHONPATH.

Module content

The module exports the following functions:

Set title as the title for the current process.
Return the current process title.

Module status

Albeit the core part of the code has been tested on a wild variety of platforms, compiling the Python module has currently been tested on:

  • GNU/Linux
  • Mac OS X

Other known implementations and discussions

  • procname: a module exposing the same functionality, but less portable and not well packaged.
  • Issue 5672: where the introduction of such functionality into the stdlib is being discussed.

Releases history

Currently in tip

  • Module works on Windows. Many thanks to Develer which provided a neat GCC package for Windows with Python integration that made the Windows porting painless.

    Notice that on Windows there is no way to change the process string. What the module does is to create a Named Object whose value can be read in tools such as Process Explorer.

Version 0.3

  • Module works on Mac OS X 10.2. Reported working on OS X 10.6 too.

Version 0.2

  • Added prctl() call on Linux > 2.6.9 to update /proc/self/status.

Version 0.1

  • Initial public release.

Project details

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Files for setproctitle, version 0.3
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