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how to kill a process

Hi Fellows,
I have a problem with process termination. I have a python code that
apache runs through a django interface.
The code is very simple, first, it creates a process with the
subprocess.Popen call, and afterwards, (using a web request) the
python code uses the PID of the previously created process(stored in a
db) and kills it with an os.kill call using the SIGKILL signal.

The creation of the process is ok, apache calls the python code, this
code creates the process and exits leaving the process up and
running :)
But when the python code is called to kill the created process, the
process is left in a zombie state.

The kill code that I'm using is:
os.kill(pid, signal.SIGKILL)

and I also tried:
kill_proc = Popen("kill -9 " + pid, shell=true)
but with no success.

I suppose that the reason maybe that the python code exits before the
kill call has finished,
so I tried with a while loop until kill_proc.poll() != None, but
without success too :(

do you know what is what I'm doing wrong?

thanks very much.-

Jun 12 '07 #1
4 20336
Richard Rossel wrote:
Hi Fellows,
I have a problem with process termination. I have a python code that
apache runs through a django interface.
The code is very simple, first, it creates a process with the
subprocess.Popen call, and afterwards, (using a web request) the
python code uses the PID of the previously created process(stored in a
db) and kills it with an os.kill call using the SIGKILL signal.

The creation of the process is ok, apache calls the python code, this
code creates the process and exits leaving the process up and
running :)
But when the python code is called to kill the created process, the
process is left in a zombie state.

The kill code that I'm using is:
os.kill(pid, signal.SIGKILL)

and I also tried:
kill_proc = Popen("kill -9 " + pid, shell=true)
but with no success.

I suppose that the reason maybe that the python code exits before the
kill call has finished,
so I tried with a while loop until kill_proc.poll() != None, but
without success too :(

do you know what is what I'm doing wrong?

thanks very much.-
Wouldn't it be better to make the process that you start respond gracefully
to some signal? Either a command over a socket or some other signal?

-Larry
Jun 12 '07 #2
On 6/12/07, Richard Rossel <he*******@gmail.comwrote:
But when the python code is called to kill the created process, the
process is left in a zombie state.
If the process is left in a zombie state, it's because the parent
process isn't calling wait(2). If the parent process is your own
python script, you might try a call to os.wait after the kill
statement.

--
Evan Klitzke <ev**@yelp.com>
Jun 12 '07 #3
On 12 jun, 13:24, "Evan Klitzke" <e...@yelp.comwrote:
On 6/12/07, Richard Rossel <henhis...@gmail.comwrote:
But when the python code is called to kill the created process, the
process is left in a zombie state.

If the process is left in a zombie state, it's because the parent
process isn't calling wait(2). If the parent process is your own
python script, you might try a call to os.wait after the kill
statement.
The wait call did the trick, but now a sh from kill process
left in zombie state, so afterwards the waitpid, I added a code line
to call poll() method from the kill process, and doesn't generates
zombie
process anymore :)

Thanks for your helps
Jun 12 '07 #4
Richard Rossel <he*******@gmail.comwrote:
Hi Fellows,
I have a problem with process termination. I have a python code that
apache runs through a django interface.
The code is very simple, first, it creates a process with the
subprocess.Popen call, and afterwards, (using a web request) the
python code uses the PID of the previously created process(stored in a
db) and kills it with an os.kill call using the SIGKILL signal.
The creation of the process is ok, apache calls the python code, this
code creates the process and exits leaving the process up and
running :)
But when the python code is called to kill the created process, the
process is left in a zombie state.
A zombie is an entry in the process table that stores the exit value
of a deceased process. (The word is a bit of a misnomer ... and
the better term would be "death certificate").

You want to do an os.wait() to clear that entry.

(The process is well and truly dead after this sort of os.kill()
but the system still wants the parent process to be able to retrieve
the exit value and this is the Unix/Linux mechanism for storing that).
The kill code that I'm using is:
os.kill(pid, signal.SIGKILL)
and I also tried:
kill_proc = Popen("kill -9 " + pid, shell=true)
but with no success.
The misunderstanding here is that you *were* successful.
You have killed the process. It's dead. Nothing's left but
a death certificate (or "gravestone" or "corpse" or whatever
you want to call it). All that remains is for the parent to
drop by the morgue (the process table) and pick up the remains.
I suppose that the reason maybe that the python code exits before the
kill call has finished,
so I tried with a while loop until kill_proc.poll() != None, but
without success too :(
do you know what is what I'm doing wrong?
You are fundamentally misunderstanding the nature of the process
table and the meaning of "zombie." Don't feel bad. It's a very
common misunderstanding which has sadly been very poorly addressed
by books on Unix systems administration and programming.
thanks very much.-
Glad to help. Try this:

os.kill(pid, signal.SIGKILL)
killedpid, stat = os.waitpid(pid, os.WNOHANG)
if killedpid == 0:
print >sys.stderr, "ACK! PROCESS NOT KILLED?"

... I'm using the "WNOHANG" flag here so that the os.waitpid()
function will return a tuple of (0,0) if the process isn't
dead yet. (Shouldn't be possible under these circumstances, but
understanding how to do this in non-blocking mode is better than
using the same code pattern in some other case and then being
surprised, probably unpleasantly, when your process is blocked
by the call).
--
Jim Dennis,
Starshine: Signed, Sealed, Delivered

Jun 13 '07 #5

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