Graphic Representation Of System Load Average On a Remote Linux System

Most of us know the file /proc/loadavg which is used to get load average information on a Linux. The first three fields in this file are load average figures giving the number of jobs in the run queue (state R) or waiting for disk I/O (state D) averaged over 1, 5, and 15 minutes. They are the same as the load average numbers given by uptime, top and other programs to see the system load average.

You will also find a few GUI tools to display graph of system load average. However, recently I saw a nice tool called tload. It is a graphic representation of system load average for the tty. tload prints a graph of the current system load average to the specified tty (or the tty of the tload process if none is specified). This is useful if you are monitoring a system for problem and best part is it works on remote system over ssh too:

tload tty2
tload [options]
tload -d 5
tload -s 3 -d 2

Sample outputs:

Gif 01: tload command in action

The tload command prints a graph of the current system load average to the specified tty (or the tty of the tload process if none is specified). The -s scale option allows a vertical scale to be specified for the display (in characters between graph ticks); thus, a smaller value represents a larger scale, and vice versa. The -d delay sets the delay between graph updates in seconds:

tload /dev/pts/2
tload /dev/tty3

Sample outputs:

Fig.01: tload on my Debian Linux desktop

Tip: Run tload over the ssh based session

The syntax is:

ssh -t tload
ssh -t tload -d 5

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1 comment… add one
  • Ed Larkin Jun 11, 2008 @ 13:54

    xload is little better IMHO while you dont get the load average its a neater way to keep remote systems organized

    ssh -t -l username servername /usr/X11R6/bin/xload -display ip:0.0 -update 2

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