Macos – How to get CPU utilization in % in terminal (mac)


Ive seen the same question asked on linux and windows but not mac (terminal). Can anyone tell me how to get the current processor utilization in %, so an example output would be 40%. Thanks

Best Solution

This works on a Mac (includes the %):

ps -A -o %cpu | awk '{s+=$1} END {print s "%"}'

To break this down a bit:

ps is the process status tool. Most *nix like operating systems support it. There are a few flags we want to pass to it:

  • -A means all processes, not just the ones running as you.
  • -o lets us specify the output we want. In this case, it all we want to the cpu% column of ps's output.

This will get us a list of all of the processes cpu usage, like


We now need to add up this list to get a final number, so we pipe ps's output to awk. awk is a pretty powerful tool for parsing and operating on text. We just simply add up the numbers, then print out the result, and add a "%" on the end.