Retrieving the Process ID (PID) in Java

Sometimes it is necessary for a Java application to retrieve it’s own process id. An example of where this could be required is for logging/debugging purposes. Below is a simple “Java way” (there are other ways to discover the process id but they are more complex and require JNI or some shell scripting) to retrieve the process id:


public class ApplicationPID {

public static void main(String [] args){
String name = ManagementFactory.getRuntimeMXBean().getName();
System.out.println("Process ID for this app = " + name);

This is the output:

Process ID for this app = 2584@MyComp

As you would have noticed from the snippet above, we have used the method: RuntimeMXBean.getName().

However, there is a caveat. As per the Javadoc, this method is JVM implementation dependent. Different implementations of JVM might return different results. Because of this limitation, we cannot use a standard parsing logic to do some automated processing on the PID.
I have tested this on SUN’s JVM, and found it to be working fine.

Returns the name representing the running Java virtual machine. The returned name string can be any arbitrary string and a Java virtual machine implementation can choose to embed platform-specific useful information in the returned name string. Each running virtual machine could have a different name.

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