ntpriority - Set the priority of a process


Usage: ntpriority [options]
  -h [ --help ]           : Display this information
  -x [ --xml ]            : Output XML
  -i [ --pid ] arg        : Specify process id
  -n [ --name ] arg       : Specify process name
  -s [ --substr ]         :   Process name is a substring match
  -l [ --level ] arg      : Set priority level of process(es)
                            'arg' may be a numerical value or IDLE, BELOW_NORMAL, NORMAL, ABOVE_NORMAL, HIGH, or REALTIME
  -t [ --test ]           : Test priority level of process(es)
  -c [ --computer ] arg   : Execute on remote computer
  -u [ --username ] arg   :   Username for remote computer
  -p [ --password ] [arg] :   Password for remote computer

The --help option displays usage information (see Usage Standards). The --xml option specifies that the output should be in XML (see Usage Standards). The --pid, --name, and --substr options are used to select processes on which to operate; see Usage Standards for the semantics. The --computer, --username, and --password options are used in remote administration.

ntpriority supports two actions: set the priority level of processes (--level), or test (display) the priority level of processes (--test).

Setting the priority level of a process will change how the system schedules that process. Higher priority processes get more CPU time.

Testing a process will display the current priority level of that process. You can get a list of all process names, ids, and their priority level by running ntpriority -t.

Note: the values BELOW_NORMAL and ABOVE_NORMAL are not supported on Windows NT.

Note: when a process creates child processes, the IDLE priority is inherited by those child processes. If the parent process is running with any other priority, the child processes start with NORMAL priority.

Due to a bug in the Win32 API on NT, this program must be run with administrator rights. This bug is not present in Windows 2000 and later systems.

On NT systems, some core system processes will fail with Access is denied errors. This may be because NT core processes do not have a priority class.

XML Output

This program conforms to the NTUtils Common Version 1.0.

The possible values for the action attribute of an info node are: set level and test.

The possible values for the value attribute of a result node are: ABOVE_NORMAL, BELOW_NORMAL, HIGH, IDLE, NORMAL, REALTIME, or a numerical identifier if the value is not well-known. When setting the level of a process, the result node reports the new level.


When operating remotely, the maximum size of the output is 8196 characters.