server process list

This post will likely end up looking like an on-going "thread" for a while.  I am going to attempt to define each process running on an Ubuntu v9.1 Karmic Koala cloud server hosted at rackspace for $11 per month.  We are on the lowest plan and are tweaking performance.  I have always wanted to clearly identify what each process does because even though we do not appear to be using alot of CPU or RAM; I still think that the sheer # of processes running or idle can have an impact.

Question:  What command will show me a simple list of the names of the processes currently running?
rtod2Asked:
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Fabio MarzoccaConnect With a Mentor FreelancerCommented:
As I said, you absolutely do NOT need gnome to have a better file manager.
If you have an ssh connection with your server, just open nautilus on your PC and type in the location string:

sftp://<username>@<yourserver.yourdomain.com>

and you will be able to browse files as you had it on your desktop.

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Fabio MarzoccaFreelancerCommented:
ps -e

or

ps -aux
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rtod2Author Commented:
HERE is an editable copy of the above.  I would greatly appreciate any comments on what each process does.  This document http://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=0AZGg6c9aeywQZDk4dGJmZF8yMzdocmd3bnNmcQ&hl=en can be edited by anyone.
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rtod2Author Commented:
UG...  This is better.  I will be filling it in over time I hope.

http://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApGg6c9aeywQdGp0d0xoYTNZb200YlRZWHh2WUxfTXc&hl=en
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Fabio MarzoccaFreelancerCommented:
Are you really asking for a full analysis of each of yoiur processes??

This is not the scope of your original question: " What command will show me a simple list of the names of the processes currently running? "

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rtod2Author Commented:
I am actually trying to figure out what processes I can safely disable or eliminate on our web server.  The server houses a Wordpress and Joomla database as well as some RubyOnRails.  Out of 179, we are bound to be ale to eliminate some of them.  Come to think of it, I wonder if there is some software that can do that.

I used to build Windows systems and we frequently used software to rid ourselves of unnecessary processes before building a new image.

I am looking for a way to do that here.
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Fabio MarzoccaFreelancerCommented:
Frankly, you should assign points and open a new question...

Anyhow, I see that you are running gnome on a server, If it's a remote server, why are you running a graphic desktop? It is consuming resources and lowering security.
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rtod2Author Commented:
We use the xterm occasionally when we need to use a gui-based app. Like for instance grabbing something using a browser, or having a better view of the file system, or editing with something a bit better than nano. We always log out when done and it is intermittently used. The connection is via ssh only so security should not be an issue.

I don't think resources used in this fashion are any higher than using a web-based file manager and editor, which would increase the overhead for apache. If anything it should be more secure than that, too.

--from Chuck, the developer
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Fabio MarzoccaFreelancerCommented:
I fyou need to browse files with nautilus, to use gedit or having a better view of the file system, you don't need gnome on the server.
You can do all of those jobs with a ssh connection (sftp) from your client PC.


Second part of your message: a web-based file editor uses MUCH less resources than a full desktop environment!
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rtod2Author Commented:
I'll look into using nautilus and scite without a desktop, but I haven't seen much impact on cpu or memory usage unless I use firefox from the server. Now THAT takes some resources! The only reason I have it installed is to make it easier to get new files to the server from somewhere else on the web.

The x-server was already installed as part of the 'minimal install' that rackspace did for us. I don't actually remember installing gnome; when I put nx-server on there it found gnome as something it could use for connection. The desktop should not be using resources except when we are actively using it, I think.

Thanks for your comments. I use X to manage my server at home but it has 4GB of memory. I'm not used to working with only 256 Mb and I'm learning a lot.
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Fabio MarzoccaFreelancerCommented:
You asked which process to remove to ssave CPU and RAM. I told you one. If you don't believe it, why are you asking for?
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rtod2Author Commented:
That would be because we had performance problems before I added nxserver. I added that desktop because I was having problems with the web-based editor and especially web based file manager. I'm pretty sure that our worst problems were from not having sufficient swap space, and that at least is resolved. I would prefer not to remove gnome but I'll take it under advisement certainly.

I don't believe anything at first--I always question, because that's how I can learn not just some specific actions but the reasons behind them.

--chuck
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rtod2Author Commented:
now THAT is great information! Thank you! [didn't try yet but will, shortly. Very much appreciated.
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rtod2Author Commented:
Holy Toledo!!.  NX and Gnome do use alot of resources.  They did get us this far though and I think were necessary in the beginning.
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rtod2Author Commented:
Nautilus http://live.gnome.org/Nautilus/Downloads for file manager?
SSH for cmd line
What about for xwindows launches?

Also, nautilus seems to have only a linux download.  You were suggesting that you could get away with ONLY running it on Windows.  Is that right?
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Fabio MarzoccaFreelancerCommented:
No. I was thinking you are running Ubuntu also on client side, as we are in Ubuntu Linux board...
If you had Linux on client side, you didn't need anything on the server to run a graphic manager from there.
From Windows, I don't know.
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rtod2Author Commented:
Recap:
1. SSH via Putty works and resolves access to cmd line.
2. file manager - don't have anything
3. launch xsession - don't have anything

Since item 1 is working, I think 2 and 3 can be accomplished with xming.  What do you guys think?
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Fabio MarzoccaFreelancerCommented:
If you could run a Linux client, you will have all you need insisde it. No need to launch xsession on the server. You may opt to install an ubuntu partition on your Linux, or simply use wubi to have windows and ubuntu?
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rtod2Author Commented:
I am aware of all that.  I want to be able to do it from any windows box.
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