Process States in Operating System

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Process States in Operating System

Process in Operating System

Process States Diagram


A process is a program in execution. As a process executes, it changes state. The state of a process is defined in part by the current activity of that process. In general, a process can have one of the following five states at a time. Each process may be in one of the following states:

  • New:- The process is being created.
  • Ready:- The process is waiting to be assigned to a processor.
  • Running:- Instructions are being executed.
  • Waiting:- The process is waiting for some event to occur, such as waiting for user input, or waiting for a file to become available.
  • Terminated:- Once the process finishes its execution, or it is terminated by the operating system, it is moved to the terminated state where it waits to be removed from the main memory.
  • Layered Structure of Operating System


These names are arbitrary, and they vary across operating systems. The states that they represent are found on all systems, however. Certain operating systems also more finely delineate process states. It is important to realize that only one process can be running on any processor at any instant.

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