prlimit Man page

PRLIMIT(1) User Commands PRLIMIT(1)


prlimit – get and set process resource limits


prlimit [options] [–resource[=limits] [–pid PID]

prlimit [options] [–resource[=limits] command [argument…]


Given a process id and one or more resources, prlimit tries to retrieve
and/or modify the limits.

When command is given, prlimit will run this command with the given

The limits parameter is composed of a soft and a hard value, separated
by a colon (:), in order to modify the existing values. If no limits
are given, prlimit will display the current values. If one of the val‐
ues is not given, then the existing one will be used. To specify the
unlimited or infinity limit (RLIM_INFINITY), the -1 or ‘unlimited’
string can be passed.

Because of the nature of limits, the soft limit must be lower or equal
to the high limit (also called the ceiling). To see all available
resource limits, refer to the RESOURCE OPTIONS section.

soft:hard Specify both limits.

soft: Specify only the soft limit.

:hard Specify only the hard limit.

value Specify both limits to the same value.



-h, –help
Display help text and exit.

Do not print a header line.

-o, –output list
Define the output columns to use. If no output arrangement is
specified, then a default set is used. Use –help to get a list
of all supported columns.

-p, –pid
Specify the process id; if none is given, the running process
will be used.

–raw Use the raw output format.

Verbose mode.

-V, –version
Display version information and exit.



-c, –core[=limits] Maximum size of a core file.

-d, –data[=limits] Maximum data size.

-e, –nice[=limits] Maximum nice priority allowed to raise.

-f, –fsize[=limits] Maximum file size.

-i, –sigpending[=limits] Maximum number of pending signals.

-l, –memlock[=limits] Maximum locked-in-memory address space.

-m, –rss[=limits] Maximum Resident Set Size (RSS).

-n, –nofile[=limits] Maximum number of open files.

-q, –msgqueue[=limits] Maximum number of bytes in POSIX message queues.

-r, –rtprio[=limits] Maximum real-time priority.

-s, –stack[=limits] Maximum size of the stack.

-t, –cpu[=limits] CPU time, in seconds.

-u, –nproc[=limits] Maximum number of processes.

-v, –as[=limits] Address space limit.

-x, –locks[=limits] Maximum number of file locks held.

-y, –rttime[=limits] Timeout for real-time tasks.

prlimit –pid 13134
Display limit values for all current resources.

prlimit –pid 13134 –rss –nofile=1024:4095
Display the limits of the RSS, and set the soft and hard limits
for the number of open files to 1024 and 4095, respectively.

prlimit –pid 13134 –nproc=512:
Modify only the soft limit for the number of processes.

prlimit –pid $$ –nproc=unlimited
Set for the current process both the soft and ceiling values for
the number of processes to unlimited.

prlimit –cpu=10 sort -u hugefile
Set both the soft and hard CPU time limit to ten seconds and run


prlimit, ulimit(1)

The prlimit system call is supported since Linux 2.6.36, older kernels
will break this program.

Davidlohr Bueso – In memory of Dennis M. Ritchie.

The prlimit command is part of the util-linux package and is available

util-linux July 2014 PRLIMIT(1)