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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 the title is mostly useful in multi-process systems, for example when a master process is forked: changing the children’s title allows to identify the task each process is busy with. The technique is used by PostgreSQL and the OpenSSH Server for example.

The procedure is hardly portable across different systems. PostgreSQL provides a good multi-platform implementation: this module is a Python wrapper around PostgreSQL code.

Installation

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:

setproctitle(title)
Set title as the title for the current process.
getproctitle()
Return the current process title.

Module status

The module can be currently compiled and effectively used on the following platforms:

  • GNU/Linux
  • BSD
  • MacOS X
  • Windows

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 using a tool such as Process Explorer (contribution of a more useful tool to be used together with setproctitle would be well accepted).

The module can probably work on HP-UX, but I haven’t found any to test with. It is unlikely that it can work on Solaris instead.

Python 3 support

As of version 1.1 the module works with Python 3. In order to install the module, you can use the distribute replacemente for easy_install.

In order to build and test the module under Python 3, the Makefile contains some helper targets.

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

Version 1.1

  • The module works correctly with Python 3.

Version 1.0.1

  • setproctitle() works even when Python messes up with argv, e.g. when run with the -m option.

Version 1.0

No major change since the previous version. The module has been heavily used in production environment without any problem reported, so it’s time to declare it stable.

Version 0.4

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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