How can this 'top' command output make sense? Load over 7 and total CPU use ~5%

Peter Boosten peter at
Mon May 25 17:28:01 UTC 2009

On 25 mei 2009, at 19:12, Wojciech Puchar wrote:

>> I think Wojciech means '...which is NOT measure of CPU _utilization_'
> exactly what i said.

Regardless from what you said: you _wrote_ CPU  _load_, not cpu  
_utilization_, which are two completely different thingemies. The load  
averages in top describe the state the entire machine is in, not just  
the CPU.

>> In that case he's correct: whenever the CPU has to wait a lot for I/ 
>> O,
>> like network and disk, then the _load_ will go up, while the CPU
>> _utilization_ stays low.
> and that's inconsistent with explanation that load average is  
> measure of CPU load.
> it's not.

I never claimed load average = CPU load!


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