who(1p) — Linux manual page


WHO(1P)                   POSIX Programmer's Manual                  WHO(1P)

PROLOG         top

       This manual page is part of the POSIX Programmer's Manual.  The Linux
       implementation of this interface may differ (consult the
       corresponding Linux manual page for details of Linux behavior), or
       the interface may not be implemented on Linux.

NAME         top

       who — display who is on the system

SYNOPSIS         top

       who [−mTu] [−abdHlprt] [file]

       who [−mu] −s [−bHlprt] [file]

       who −q [file]

       who am i

       who am I

DESCRIPTION         top

       The who utility shall list various pieces of information about
       accessible users. The domain of accessibility is implementation-

       Based on the options given, who can also list the user's name,
       terminal line, login time, elapsed time since activity occurred on
       the line, and the process ID of the command interpreter for each
       current system user.

OPTIONS         top

       The who utility shall conform to the Base Definitions volume of
       POSIX.1‐2008, Section 12.2, Utility Syntax Guidelines.

       The following options shall be supported. The metavariables, such as
       <line>, refer to fields described in the STDOUT section.

       −a        Process the implementation-defined database or named file
                 with the −b, −d, −l, −p, −r, −t, −T and −u options turned

       −b        Write the time and date of the last system reboot. The
                 system reboot time is the time at which the implementation
                 is able to commence running processes.

       −d        Write a list of all processes that have expired and not
                 been respawned by the init system process. The <exit> field
                 shall appear for dead processes and contain the termination
                 and exit values of the dead process. This can be useful in
                 determining why a process terminated.

       −H        Write column headings above the regular output.

       −l        (The letter ell.) List only those lines on which the system
                 is waiting for someone to login. The <name> field shall be
                 LOGIN in such cases. Other fields shall be the same as for
                 user entries except that the <state> field does not exist.

       −m        Output only information about the current terminal.

       −p        List any other process that is currently active and has
                 been previously spawned by init.

       −q        (Quick.) List only the names and the number of users
                 currently logged on. When this option is used, all other
                 options shall be ignored.

       −r        Write the current run-level of the init process.

       −s        List only the <name>, <line>, and <time> fields.  This is
                 the default case.

       −t        Indicate the last change to the system clock.

       −T        Show the state of each terminal, as described in the STDOUT

       −u        Write ``idle time'' for each displayed user in addition to
                 any other information. The idle time is the time since any
                 activity occurred on the user's terminal. The method of
                 determining this is unspecified.  This option shall list
                 only those users who are currently logged in.  The <name>
                 is the user's login name. The <line> is the name of the
                 line as found in the directory /dev.  The <time> is the
                 time that the user logged in. The <activity> is the number
                 of hours and minutes since activity last occurred on that
                 particular line. A dot indicates that the terminal has seen
                 activity in the last minute and is therefore ``current''.
                 If more than twenty-four hours have elapsed or the line has
                 not been used since boot time, the entry shall be marked
                 <old>. This field is useful when trying to determine
                 whether a person is working at the terminal or not. The
                 <pid> is the process ID of the user's login process.

OPERANDS         top

       The following operands shall be supported:

       am i, am I
                 In the POSIX locale, limit the output to describing the
                 invoking user, equivalent to the −m option. The am and i or
                 I must be separate arguments.

       file      Specify a pathname of a file to substitute for the
                 implementation-defined database of logged-on users that who
                 uses by default.

STDIN         top

       Not used.

INPUT FILES         top



       The following environment variables shall affect the execution of

       LANG      Provide a default value for the internationalization
                 variables that are unset or null. (See the Base Definitions
                 volume of POSIX.1‐2008, Section 8.2, Internationalization
                 Variables for the precedence of internationalization
                 variables used to determine the values of locale

       LC_ALL    If set to a non-empty string value, override the values of
                 all the other internationalization variables.

       LC_CTYPE  Determine the locale for the interpretation of sequences of
                 bytes of text data as characters (for example, single-byte
                 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.

       LC_TIME   Determine the locale used for the format and contents of
                 the date and time strings.

       NLSPATH   Determine the location of message catalogs for the
                 processing of LC_MESSAGES.

       TZ        Determine the timezone used when writing date and time
                 information. If TZ is unset or null, an unspecified default
                 timezone shall be used.



STDOUT         top

       The who utility shall write its default format to the standard output
       in an implementation-defined format, subject only to the requirement
       of containing the information described above.

       XSI-conformant systems shall write the default information to the
       standard output in the following general format:


       For the −b option, <line> shall be "systemboot".  The <name> is

       The following format shall be used for the −T option:

           "%s %c %s %s\n" <name>, <terminal state>, <terminal name>,
               <time of login>

       where <terminal state> is one of the following characters:

       +       The terminal allows write access to other users.

       −       The terminal denies write access to other users.

       ?       The terminal write-access state cannot be determined.

       <space> This entry is not associated with a terminal.

       In the POSIX locale, the <time of login> shall be equivalent in
       format to the output of:

           date +"%b %e %H:%M"

       If the −u option is used with −T, the idle time shall be added to the
       end of the previous format in an unspecified format.

STDERR         top

       The standard error shall be used only for diagnostic messages.

OUTPUT FILES         top




EXIT STATUS         top

       The following exit values shall be returned:

        0    Successful completion.

       >0    An error occurred.



       The following sections are informative.


       The name init used for the system process is the most commonly used
       on historical systems, but it may vary.

       The ``domain of accessibility'' referred to is a broad concept that
       permits interpretation either on a very secure basis or even to allow
       a network-wide implementation like the historical rwho.

EXAMPLES         top


RATIONALE         top

       Due to differences between historical implementations, the base
       options provided were a compromise to allow users to work with those
       functions. The standard developers also considered removing all the
       options, but felt that these options offered users valuable
       functionality. Additional options to match historical systems are
       available on XSI-conformant systems.

       It is recognized that the who command may be of limited usefulness,
       especially in a multi-level secure environment. The standard
       developers considered, however, that having some standard method of
       determining the ``accessibility'' of other users would aid user

       No format was specified for the default who output for systems not
       supporting the XSI option. In such a user-oriented command, designed
       only for human use, this was not considered to be a deficiency.

       The format of the terminal name is unspecified, but the descriptions
       of ps, talk, and write require that they use the same format.

       It is acceptable for an implementation to produce no output for an
       invocation of who mil.



SEE ALSO         top


       The Base Definitions volume of POSIX.1‐2008, Chapter 8, Environment
       Variables, Section 12.2, Utility Syntax Guidelines

COPYRIGHT         top

       Portions of this text are reprinted and reproduced in electronic form
       from IEEE Std 1003.1, 2013 Edition, Standard for Information
       Technology -- Portable Operating System Interface (POSIX), The Open
       Group Base Specifications Issue 7, Copyright (C) 2013 by the
       Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc and The Open
       Group.  (This is POSIX.1-2008 with the 2013 Technical Corrigendum 1
       applied.) In the event of any discrepancy between this version and
       the original IEEE and The Open Group Standard, the original IEEE and
       The Open Group Standard is the referee document. The original
       Standard can be obtained online at http://www.unix.org/online.html .

       Any typographical or formatting errors that appear in this page are
       most likely to have been introduced during the conversion of the
       source files to man page format. To report such errors, see
       https://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/reporting_bugs.html .

IEEE/The Open Group                 2013                             WHO(1P)

Pages that refer to this page: id(1p)logname(1p)talk(1p)write(1p)