getloadavg — get system load averages


#include <stdlib.h>

int getloadavg(double loadavg[], int nelem);

Feature Test Macro Requirements for glibc (see feature_test_macros(7)):


    Since glibc 2.19:
    In glibc up to and including 2.19:


The getloadavg() function returns the number of processes in the system run queue averaged over various periods of time. Up to nelem samples are retrieved and assigned to successive elements of loadavg[]. The system imposes a maximum of 3 samples, representing averages over the last 1, 5, and 15 minutes, respectively.

Return Value

If the load average was unobtainable, -1 is returned; otherwise, the number of samples actually retrieved is returned.


This function is available in glibc since version 2.2.


For an explanation of the terms used in this section, see attributes(7).

Interface Attribute Value
getloadavg() Thread safety MT-Safe

Conforming to

Not in POSIX.1. Present on the BSDs and Solaris.

See Also

uptime(1), proc(5)


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2016-03-15 Linux Programmer's Manual