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'LavaPS' is an interactive process-tracking program that presents a small amount of important information in a graphical analog form (as opposed to lots of information presented digitally). It runs in the background and quickly and simply gives you a rough idea of what's happening. Each blob represents a process. Blob size is proportional to memory usage, and movement is proportional to CPU usage. Color is a combination of program name (which decided the hue) and time since the program last ran (which decides saturation): things that haven't run in a while are stationary and dark, while things that run a lot are bright and moving. A popup box gives more information about a process. Clicking the left button brings up the popup, the right button brings up a control menu.


User manpage available in HTML format from


Download version 2.4 (stable)
released on 26 September 2003


Related Projects


LicenseVerified byVerified onNotes
GPLv2Janet Casey9 July 2002

Leaders and contributors

John Heidemann Maintainer

Resources and communication

Audience Resource type URI
Bug Tracking,Developer,Support E-mail

Software prerequisites

Kind Description
Required to build Tcl/Tk 8.x *or* Gnome/GTK 2.2
Required to build C++
Required to build Gcc 2.8 or later
Required to build STL

This entry (in part or in whole) was last reviewed on 1 July 2004.


Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the page “GNU Free Documentation License”.

The copyright and license notices on this page only apply to the text on this page. Any software or copyright-licenses or other similar notices described in this text has its own copyright notice and license, which can usually be found in the distribution or license text itself.

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