Linux dd Command Show Progress Copy Bar With Status

Posted on in Categories , , last updated August 18, 2016

I am using dd command for block level copy and just found out that there’s no built in way to check the progress. How do I use the Linux or Unix dd command while coping /dev/sda to /deb/sdb and display a progress bar when data goes through a pipe? How do I monitor the progress of dd on Linux?

You need to use the pv command which allows you to see the progress of data through a pipeline. You need to install pv command as described here. Once installed, type the following commands to see the status bar. Please note that if standard input is not a file and no size was given with the -s option, the progress bar cannot indicate how close to completion the transfer is, so it will just move left and right to indicate that data is moving. It will also show average MB/s rate:

Examples: Use pv command monitor the progress of dd

WARNING! These examples may crash your computer and may result into data loss if not executed with care.

Copy /dev/sda to to /dev/sdb:

pv -tpreb /dev/sda | dd of=/dev/sdb bs=64M


pv -tpreb /dev/sda | dd of=/dev/sdb bs=4096 conv=notrunc,noerror

Sample outputs:

Fig.01: pv and dd in action
Fig.01: pv and dd in action

You can create a progress bar and display using the dialog command as follows:

(pv -n /dev/sda | dd of=/dev/sdb bs=128M conv=notrunc,noerror) 2>&1 | dialog --gauge "Running dd command (cloning), please wait..." 10 70 0

Sample outputs:

HowTo: Check The Status of dd Command In Progress under Unix like operating systems
Fig.02: Show the Status of dd Command in progress using pv and dialog command

Examples: Use gnu dd command from coreutils version 8.24 or above only

Pass the progress option to see periodic transfer statistics using GNU dd command:
# dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb bs=1024k status=progress
Here is another example from my Mac OS X/MacOS:
$ sudo gdd if=ZeroShell-3.6.0-USB.img of=/dev/disk5 bs=1024k status=progress
Sample outputs:

Fig.03: GNU dd displaying progress
Fig.03: GNU dd displaying progress

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. He has worked with global clients and in various industries, including IT, education, defense and space research, and the nonprofit sector. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+.

11 comment

  1. $ tmux
    $ dd if=/dev/urandom of=/dev/null bs=16k count=100000

    $ ps aux | grep dd
    (show pid)

    $ kill -SIGUSR1 (pid)

    $ tmux attach
    65260+0 enregistrements lus
    65259+0 enregistrements écrits
    267300864 octets (267 MB) copiés, 16,5587 s, 16,1 MB/s

  2. OR you could use dcfldd, if your distro/OS has it (Debian does). The awkward acronym stems from it being the Department of Defense Computer Forensics Lab’s version of dd.

  3. I use this command to create my Raspberry Pi compressed images
    (pv -n /dev/sda | gzip -c | dd of=GentooV2.gz bs=128M conv=notrunc,noerror) 2>&1 | dialog –gauge “Dump running” 10 70 0

    It’s better looking than kill -USR1

    1. *not much easier. Just simple. Typo. The point is you can just check up on it rather than having another process always polling the dd process (dd actually does stop to report the progress).

  4. You wrote:
    Copy /dev/sda to to /deb/sdb:

    Surely you meant Copy /dev/sda to to /dev/sdb:

    That’s dev, not deb. Please correct this, and try to heed your own warning about executing with care.

  5. New version of coreutils (8.24) adding a status progress to dd tool:

    Usage on Xubuntu 15.10:

    Open terminal shell and type these commands:

    tar -xf coreutils-8.24.tar.xz
    cd coreutils-8.24
    ./configure && make -j $(nproc)

    Run dd as root:

    sudo ./dd if=/dev/sdc of=/dev/sda conv=noerror status=progress

    You will see: Bytes, Seconds and Velocity (Bytes/seconds)

    To check versions of dd:


    dd --version

    New (cd coreutils-8.24/src):

    ./dd --version

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