A process monitoring system is a software program that allows you to review what processes are currently running on your computer at the time. The process monitoring system is a standard part of any operating system due to the need for users to see and manage what processes are being run in the background. To understand what a process monitoring system is we have to know some basic information about processes and what they do and how they operate. Then we have to get an understanding of the different utilities a process monitoring software provides. After that we will introduce some standard process monitoring software for each standard operating system.
What are Processes? Foreground vs Background
A process in computing is an instance of any given program running currently on a thread. As you might know the CPU of any computer has multiple cores that can process tasks at any given time. Each one of these cores has one or more virtual threads that can compute data in real time. Today Most CPUs have 2 to four cores that are capable of running up to 8 threads and that changes with each specific CPU. These instances of programs are run in two ways. Either the user can start up any program deliberately, for example when you open up your text editor in windows, notepad.exe is the process that is opened and run on your computer deliberately by you to work on a specific task that the user needs. These processes are mostly run in the foreground, meaning you have access to them and can interact with them on your GUI. Some other processes are needed for the operating system to function, that are run by the bootloader itself to facilitate some tasks that need to be done for an operating system to function. These processes are called background processes because you don’t have access to them and cannot interact with them. They are there to facilitate services that either your OS or another application needs. So to recap background processes are the processes that the system runs by itself and you cannot interact with. And foreground processes are the ones that usually open up a window or command line for the user to be able to interact with them.
Process Monitoring Software In Depth Functions
By now we know that there are many processes that are run on any given computer system, but as you might have the experience yourself with a computer, sometimes they are unresponsive or act in strange ways that are not suitable for a user. These processes can crash, be rendered unresponsive or act in ways that were not intended, the very fact that these events might happen have created a need for process monitoring software. Process monitoring software is one of the main administrative programs that make up the operating system. It differs whether you are using windows or linux but there are many features that are shared between different process monitoring software. Here we will go through the different features any one of these programs is offering and how we might be able to benefit from using them the right way.
Every decent process monitoring software has a list of different processes that are run on the computer at the time that you are checking them. This list consists of different process names, if there is a process tree of different interdependent processes it will show up here as well. Then you have your standard metrics that show you what kind of resources each process is using. This is mostly information about the memory consumption (RAM) , the Disk load (HDD/SSD), the processing power each process is using (CPU load). If you have a graphic processing unit on your computer the information about the GPU will also be shown. Then you have access whether or not you want to shut these processes down, restart them or even run new processes in most of these process monitoring software programs. This is the basic building structure of most of these programs but they might have more or less features attached to them depending on what kind of process monitoring program you are using at any given time.
We have provided you some information about different process monitoring programs in this article and you can check out which ones fit you best based on your operating system, there are many picks as you might know and it is best to make an informed decision based on what features you need and what amount of processing power your machine these programs will be run on have. For example linux users can get by with the ps command to just check and see what is run on their machines and most linux distributions have that command as a default feature anyway.
The world of process monitoring software is a vast one, but less so comparing to all these other growing fields of computer monitoring and network management software today. Be sure to pick the right ones yourself. But our pick is to go with what ever your operating system provides. As a good IT technician you should be able to work with these standard process monitoring software and be able to use them effectively and efficiently. This will allow you to work on different computers with the base amount of knowledge needed to operate these kinds of software. Be sure to give us a follow as we provide you with better and more informative articles on our blog each week.