NICE(1) BSD General Commands Manual NICE(1)NAMEnice — execute a utility at an altered scheduling priority
SYNOPSISnice [-n increment] utility [argument ...]
The nice utility runs utility at an altered scheduling priority, by
incrementing its “nice” value by the specified increment, or a default
value of 10. The lower the nice value of a process, the higher its
The superuser may specify a negative increment in order to run a utility
with a higher scheduling priority.
Some shells may provide a builtin nice command which is similar or iden‐
tical to this utility. Consult the builtin(1) manual page.
The PATH environment variable is used to locate the requested utility if
the name contains no ‘/’ characters.
Execute utility ‘date’ at priority 5 assuming the priority of the shell
nice-n 5 date
Execute utility ‘date’ at priority -19 assuming the priority of the shell
is 0 and you are the super-user:
nice-n 16 nice-n -35 date
If utility is invoked, the exit status of nice is the exit status of
An exit status of 126 indicates utility was found, but could not be exe‐
cuted. An exit status of 127 indicates utility could not be found.
SEE ALSObuiltin(1), csh(1), idprio(1), rtprio(1), getpriority(2), setpriority(2),
The traditional -increment option has been deprecated but is still sup‐
The nice utility conforms to IEEE Std 1003.1-2001 (“POSIX.1”).
A nice utility appeared in Version 4 AT&T UNIX.
BSD June 6, 1993 BSD