The Single UNIX ® Specification, Version 2
Copyright © 1997 The Open Group


jobs - display status of jobs in the current session


jobs [ -l| -p][job_id...]


The jobs utility displays the status of jobs that were started in the current shell environment; see Shell Execution Environment .

When jobs reports the termination status of a job, the shell removes its process ID from the list of those "known in the current shell execution environment"; see Lists .


The jobs utility supports the XBD specification, Utility Syntax Guidelines  .

The following options are supported:

(The letter ell.) Provide more information about each job listed. This information includes the job number, current job, process group ID, state and the command that formed the job.
Display only the process IDs for the process group leaders of the selected jobs.

By default, the jobs utility displays the status of all stopped jobs, running background jobs and all jobs whose status has changed and have not been reported by the shell.


The following operand is supported:
Specifies the jobs for which the status is to be displayed. If no job_id is given, the status information for all jobs will be displayed. The format of job_id is described in the entry for job control job ID in the XBD specification, Glossary  .


Not used.




The following environment variables affect the execution of jobs:
Provide a default value for the internationalisation variables that are unset or null. If LANG is unset or null, the corresponding value from the implementation-dependent default locale will be used. If any of the internationalisation variables contains an invalid setting, the utility will behave as if none of the variables had been defined.
If set to a non-empty string value, override the values of all the other internationalisation variables.
Determine the locale for the interpretation of sequences of bytes of text data as characters (for example, single- as opposed to multi-byte characters in arguments).
Determine the locale that should be used to affect the format and contents of diagnostic messages written to standard error and informative messages written to standard output.
Determine the location of message catalogues for the processing of LC_MESSAGES .




If the -p option is specified, the output consists of one line for each process ID:

"%d\n", <process ID>

Otherwise, if the -l option is not specified, the output is a series of lines of the form:

"[%d] %c %s %s\n", <job-number>,

where the fields are as follows:
The character "+" identifies the job that would be used as a default for the fg or bg utilities; this job can also be specified using the job_id %+ or %%. The character "-" identifies the job that would become the default if the current default job were to exit; this job can also be specified using the job_id %-. For other jobs, this field is a space character. At most one job can be identified with "+" and at most one job can be identified with "-". If there is any suspended job, then the current job will be a suspended job. If there are at least two suspended jobs, then the previous job will also be a suspended job.
A number that can be used to identify the process group to the wait, fg, bg and kill utilities. Using these utilities, the job can be identified by prefixing the job number with "%".
One of the following strings (in the POSIX locale):
Indicates that the job has not been suspended by a signal and has not exited.
Indicates that the job completed and returned exit status zero.
Indicates that the job completed normally and that it exited with the specified non-zero exit status, code, expressed as a decimal number.
Stopped (SIGTSTP)
Indicates that the job was suspended by the SIGTSTP signal.
Stopped (SIGSTOP)
Indicates that the job was suspended by the SIGSTOP signal.
Stopped (SIGTTIN)
Indicates that the job was suspended by the SIGTTIN signal.
Stopped (SIGTTOU)
Indicates that the job was suspended by the SIGTTOU signal.

The implementation may substitute the string Suspended in place of Stopped. If the job was terminated by a signal, the format of <state> is unspecified, but it will be visibly distinct from all of the other <state> formats shown here and will indicate the name or description of the signal causing the termination.

The associated command that was given to the shell.

If the -l option is specified, a field containing the process group ID is inserted before the <state> field. Also, more processes in a process group may be output on separate lines, using only the process ID and <command> fields.


Used only for diagnostic messages.






The following exit values are returned:
Successful completion.
An error occurred.




The -p option is the only portable way to find out the process group of a job because different implementations have different strategies for defining the process group of the job. Usage such as $(jobs -p) provides a way of referring to the process group of the job in an implementation-independent way.

The jobs utility will not work as expected when it is operating in its own utility execution environment because that environment will have no applicable jobs to manipulate. See the APPLICATION USAGE section for bg. For this reason, jobs is generally implemented as a shell regular built-in.






bg, fg, kill, wait.

UNIX ® is a registered Trademark of The Open Group.
Copyright © 1997 The Open Group
[ Main Index | XSH | XCU | XBD | XCURSES | XNS ]