Top showing : "Users 6"

Hi all -

//I run Ubuntu 14.04 - system has only one user

According to top there are 6 users running on my system, which seems odd because I only have one user on the system. Here's some info:

  • top
    top - 12:45:48 up 13 days, 23:03, 6 users, load average: 2.71, 2.83, 2.27
    Tasks: 197 total, 2 running, 194 sleeping, 0 stopped, 1 zombie
  • w
    12:47:16 up 13 days, 23:04, 6 users, load average: 1.72, 2.55, 2.23
    USER TTY FROM [email protected] IDLE JCPU PCPU WHAT
    cotton :0 :0 12:27 ?xdm? 1:38m 0.68s init --user
    cotton pts/6 :0 12:30 1.00s 0.18s 6.36s gnome-terminal

  • who
    cotton :0 2015-09-22 12:27 (:0)
    cotton pts/6 2015-09-22 12:30 (:0)

  • w -l
    LOGIN tty5 2015-09-08 13:43 892 id=5
    LOGIN tty6 2015-09-08 13:43 902 id=6
    LOGIN tty2 2015-09-15 13:34 26585 id=2
    LOGIN tty3 2015-09-15 13:34 26588 id=3
    LOGIN tty4 2015-09-15 13:34 26591 id=4
    LOGIN tty1 2015-09-22 12:32 28302 id=1

Additional info:

  • After logging off and going to tty only I still get 4 users in top.
  • I used all the ttys while logged in. I think I am closing them properly by typing 'exit' when done with them.

I'm just curious why there are 6 users on the machine right now.

Basically TOP shows users (yourself) and user processes that you start, on my system if I'm running TOP from a fresh boot it will show one user which is me, but if I start my KVM (which requires admin access to start the VM) it will then show a second user on my system, I may be wrong but I believe it is not just showing physical users that are logged in but processes/tasks that the user owns and has started. ...but I could be totally wrong.

Further information:

After restarting my computer, and logging in - top is showing 2 users.
Next, I started a tty (ctrl + alt + f1), logged in, typed 'exit', and pressed ctrl + alt + f7.
Ran top : Now showing 3 users logged in.

I think, possibly, I'm not properly ending my tty session and process.

@blanger Thanks for your response.

you need to logout of your tty's

Do I kill it from the terminal after 'logout' or can I do from the tty?

That depends like my 'w' says i have 6 users but they are all me one is running w one is upstart and 4 java running my minecraft servers

usually i type logout when I am done in a tty not exit, however it apears on my system ubuntu server 15.04 both methods log you out. of the tty

Its nothing to worry about, each shell you use will count as a user. open a terminal and open another terminal and youll see each count as a user. When you log out a tty it should destroy its self. what 3 users did it show logged in?