nohup command is a utility in Unix and Linux systems used to execute a program in a way that it is not affected by the terminal being disconnected or the session being closed. The name “nohup” stands for “no hang up,” indicating that the program will continue running even if the terminal window is closed or the connection to a remote server is terminated. The output of the program is usually written to a file called
nohup.out in the current working directory.
When to use nohup
You should use
nohup when you want to run a command or process that will continue running even after you’ve logged out of the current session or closed the terminal window. This is particularly useful for long-running tasks, background processes, or scripts that you want to ensure keep running regardless of your active connection. By using
nohup, you prevent the command from being terminated when the terminal session ends.
Here are some scenarios when you might want to use
- Running Background Processes: If you’re starting a process that you want to keep running in the background, such as a server or a data processing task, you can use
nohupto ensure it isn’t terminated when you log out.
- Long-Running Scripts or Commands: If you’re executing a script or command that might take a long time to complete and you don’t want to tie up your terminal session,
nohupcan be helpful.
- Remote Server Tasks: When you’re connected to a remote server via SSH and want to run a command that persists even after you disconnect, using
nohupensures the task continues.
- Preventing Disruptions: If you’re concerned about potential interruptions like accidental terminal closure or network issues causing command termination,
nohupprovides a safety net.
- Logging Output:
nohupalso captures the output of the command in a log file (
nohup.out), which can be useful for later reference or troubleshooting.
Keep in mind that while
nohup is great for running tasks that need to continue despite terminal sessions ending, it doesn’t provide advanced process management features. For more complex scenarios, you might consider using tools like
The basic syntax of the
nohup command is as follows:
nohup command-to-run &
For example, if you want to run a program named
nohup, you can use:
nohup ./my_program &
Once the program is started using
nohup, you can close the terminal window or log out of the server without interrupting the program’s execution.