How to kill a spawned process?

Posted on 2008-06-15
Last Modified: 2010-04-21

I'm running an external server using System.Diagnostics.Process, the problem
is that this server spawns another process.
So far I am only able to close/kill the first process but not the spawned one.
Is there some way to track all spawned processes and kill them on demand?

I can not kill it by name alone, since this is a common thread name, which could
mean that I kill some other apps process.

Question by:oxyoo
  • 2
LVL 10

Author Comment

ID: 21790774
I think I have what is needed now, after a lot of research. The code
is pretty ugly but so far does the job.

Can anyone find any flaws with it?

What the code does is that iterates through all the processes and
finds the parentId, then compares it with my runningServer process
to see if it is the parent. If yes, it kills it.

                int parentId = runningServer.Id;

                foreach (Process process in Process.GetProcesses()) {

                    PerformanceCounter myParentMultiProcID = new PerformanceCounter("Process", "ID Process",


                    try {

                        float tmpParentPID = myParentMultiProcID.NextValue();

                        if (tmpParentPID == parentId) {





                    catch (InvalidOperationException) {}


                // NOT NEEDED?

                try {



                    runningServer = null;


                catch (InvalidOperationException) {}

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Accepted Solution

gregmulvihill earned 500 total points
ID: 21791840
I adapted a solution ( presented by Robert Villahermosa to deal with multiple process instances of the same name.  Pass in the process ID of the server you started with System.Diagnostics.Process, and FindChildProcessIDs should return an array with all the spawned process IDs.  Then you can iterate through the list and kill the processes.


int[] oChildProcessIDs = FindChildProcessIDs(nServiceProcessID);

foreach (int nProcessID in oChildProcessIDs)
      Process oProcess = Process.GetProcessById(nProcessID);

		public static int[] FindChildProcessIDs(int nParentProcessID)


			List<int> oChildProcessIDs = new List<int>();

			foreach (Process oProcess in Process.GetProcesses())


				Process oParentProcess = FindParentProcess(oProcess);

				if ((null != oParentProcess) && (nParentProcessID == oParentProcess.Id))





			return oChildProcessIDs.ToArray();



		public static Process FindParentProcess(Process oTargetChildProcess)


			Process oParentProcess = null;

			Process[] oChildProcessList = Process.GetProcessesByName(oTargetChildProcess.ProcessName);

			for (int nIndex = 0; nIndex < oChildProcessList.Length; nIndex++)


				string sChildProcessName = oTargetChildProcess.ProcessName;

				if (nIndex != 0) sChildProcessName += "#" + nIndex;

				PerformanceCounter oChildProcessID = new PerformanceCounter("Process", "ID Process", sChildProcessName);

				PerformanceCounter oParentProcessID = new PerformanceCounter("Process", "Creating Process ID", sChildProcessName);

				int nChildProcessID = (int)oChildProcessID.NextValue();

				int nParentProcessID = (int)oParentProcessID.NextValue();



				if (oTargetChildProcess.Id == nChildProcessID)




						oParentProcess = Process.GetProcessById(nParentProcessID);



					catch { }



			return oParentProcess;


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LVL 10

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31467371
Thanks, an excellent solution!

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