Zombie process

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# 1  
Old 04-25-2002
Question Zombie process

How do i kill a zombie process. Is it that only root can kill a zombie process.
# 2  
Old 04-25-2002
Could you plz explane what is/you meant with "zombie process"

Normaly a user can kill his own process via kill -9 and root is able to kill all processes, am I right?


# 3  
Old 04-25-2002

i think when we use "top" if the particular process does not have a tty ( other than the root) it sometimes shows up as a zombie process.
# 4  
Old 04-25-2002

i found a better explianation from http://www.erlenstar.demon.co.uk/unix/faq_2.html#SEC13

When a program forks and the child finishes before the parent, the kernel still keeps some of its information about the child in case the parent might need it -- for example, the parent may need to check the child's exit status. To be able to get this information, the parent calls wait(); when this happens, the kernel can discard the information.

In the interval between the child terminating and the parent calling wait(), the child is said to be a `zombie'. (If you do `ps', the child will have a `Z' in its status field to indicate this.) Even though it's not running, it's still taking up an entry in the process table. (It consumes no other resources, but some utilities may show bogus figures for e.g. CPU usage; this is because some parts of the process table entry have been overlaid by accounting info to save space.)
# 5  
Old 04-25-2002
Ok, I got this! thx

So for what case it makes sence to kill a "Z"-process?
If I got it right it will only appear a short while, won´t it?

# 6  
Old 04-25-2002
Hammer & Screwdriver Zombie Process

you can kill a zombie process by killing the parent process. this is done by issuing
kill -18 PPID or by rebooting your system
will clean up any zombie process.
# 7  
Old 04-26-2002
Usually, but not necessarily true

Not all Zombies can be killed. (pun intended)

Occasionally, these processes are in such a state that the only way to get rid of them is to reboot to clear them.

In most cases, you can get rid of a zombie by normal means, "kill -15 zombie", "kill -9 zombie".

I had a good case a few weeks ago that required me to reboot to get rid of zombies...

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