Linux Tutorial Series

Linux Tutorial Series – 111 – Resource monitoring with vmstat and other commands

Here is the video version, if you prefer it:

In this short article I would like to mention a few commands that enable you to monitor your computer resource usage. They are: (Ward, 2014)⁠

  • vmstat
  • iostat
  • iotop
  • pidstat

I never used any of the above commands and so I am leaving it here for you to explore if you ever have the need. So far, I haven’t had the need.

A note: To understand the output of some of the commands above, you may need to understand how computer memory works in modern computers. In particular, you need to understand what is virtual memory and what are pages and what is a page fault. A Wikipedia article read on the topics mentioned in the previous sentence and further Googling on the topics that you don’t understand will be enough for you to gain a grasp of what is going on.

Thank you for reading!


Ward, B. (2014). How Linux Works: What Every Superuser Should Know (2nd ed.). No Starch Press. Pages 183-188

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