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How do you run a Background Process in Linux?

I have been using Linux for 8 or maybe 9 years. Believe me, it is one of the best operating systems that...

I have been using Linux for 8 or maybe 9 years. Believe me, it is one of the best operating systems that I have been using for free. I have tried so many different Linux operating systems with foreground and Background Processes in Linux. I have used Linux Mint, Ubuntu, Arch Linux, Fedora, Linux lite, and many more. There is a list of the best Linux distributions by my friend Jeff Max.

Getting back to the topic “How do you run a Background Process in Linux?”. Linux is the best open-source operating system used to develop multiple software. As we all know, it works based on commands in most of the cases. If you are running one command, you must wait for the current command to finish to start a new one. This process is known as the foreground process.

But isn’t it too hectic? Are you also looking for a solution to this? Do you also want to run a new command immediately? Then, to run the Lynix command in the background, you must know about the background process.

Running a process in the background allows the users to execute their commands without waiting. However, if you are new to Linux and want to know how this works, then you are at the right place.

Today, we will explain a background process and different implementation methods. So, let’s get started.

What do you mean by Background Process in Linux?

Before diving into the different types of methods to implement the Background Process in Linux, let’s understand what it is all about.

In Linux, a background process is like a multitasking pro. When you run a command, it usually hogs the terminal until it’s done. But if you run a process in the background, it quietly does its thing while you’re free to boss around other commands. This post of mine will spill the beans on how to make this happen so you can be the master of your Linux OS. Let’s dive into the tricks of handling background processes and level up your Linux skills.

Background Process in Linux

What are the different methods to implement the background process in Linux?

There are multiple methods to implement background processes in Linux. These methods are some set of commands you need to run before starting your work. It will not only ease your work but also help you to enhance your productivity. Let’s dive into the three most accessible processes one by one.

Using bg Command

We’ve got the bg command in Linux to sneak a process into the background. It’s like the backstage pass for processes. This nifty command, baked into most Linux systems, lets you whisk a running task away from the spotlight. Let’s break down how to pull off this background magic using the bg command. Ready? Let’s roll.

1. Start with running a command. For example, try to compress a large file with gzip command:

gzip largefile.txt

2. While this command is running, press CTRL+Z. As a result, this process will pause.

3. To run it in the background, use the following command


Now, the task’s doing its thing backstage, and you’ll spot its job ID on the screen. You can boss other commands around while it quietly hustles in the background. But heads up, it might still shoot out messages on the terminal.

Using & Symbol

The following method is to use the & symbol. This symbol indicates the shell to execute the background process immediately. Here’s an example:

gzip largefile.txt &

When you run the gzip command with &, it runs in the background, and you’ll see the process ID on the terminal. This allows you to continue using the shell while it quietly finishes.

Using Screen Command

The screen command will help you to handle the Background Process in Linux in one go. It will help you to manage your different tasks in background processes. You can create an independent session for your background task and keep working without waiting for it to finish. Here are the steps to use this command:

  • Use the ‘screen’ command to start a new session.
  • Now, execute a script like a regular terminal session.
  • To detach this session and execute the command in the background, press CTRL+a and d.
  • This will take you to the main shell. However, the screen session will keep running in the background.
  • Use the ‘screen -r’ command to reattach the background screen session.

The screen command is handy for remote servers and tasks that take a while. It keeps things running persistently, even if you’re not directly connected.


Running background processes in Linux is one of the important things to know. We discussed the three most common methods used to run background processes. If you know more about them, share them with us in the comments section.

To learn more tips and tricks to use Linux, keep reading TrickyEnough.


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Written by Prince Lahoria
A blogger and a person who likes to write about Business and other related things.

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