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Ubuntu Unleashed 2014 Edition: Covering 13.10 and 14.04,Ninth Edition by Paul Hudson, Andrew Hudson, Matthew Helmke

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Background Processing

The shell allows you to start a command and then launch it into the background as a process by using an ampersand (&) at the end of a command line. This technique is often used at the command line of an X terminal window to start a client and return to the command line. For example, to launch another terminal window using the xterm client, you can use the following:

matthew@seymour:~$ xterm &[3] 1437

The numbers echoed back show a number (3 in this example), which is a job number, or reference number for a shell process, and a process ID number, or PID (1437 in this example). You can kill the xterm window session by using the shell’s built-in kill command, along with the job number like this:

matthew@seymour:~$ kill %3

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