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GetProcessTimes

, 4 May 2004
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How to retrieve the running-time of a process

Sample Image - ProcessInfo.jpg

Introduction

This article is a brief explanation of how to use the GetProcessTimes API. There are times when knowing how long a process has been running might be useful.

The time values returned from GetProcessTimes are fairly easy to convert into something useful/readable. Let's operate on this code snippet:

HANDLE hProcess;
</CODE>FILETIME ftCreation,
         ftExit,
         ftKernel,
         ftUser;

GetProcessTimes(hProcess, &ftCreation, &ftExit, &ftKernel, &ftUser);

Calculating running-time

A processes' running-time is the amount of time that has elapsed between the current time and the processes' creation time. This is stored in a FILETIME structure.

Once the elapsed time is calculated, then it's a matter of converting it to hours, minutes, seconds, etc. Luckily, the COleDateTime class makes this a painless process.

COleDateTime timeNow = COleDateTime::GetCurrentTime(),
timeCreation = ftCreation;
COleDateTimeSpan timeDiff = timeNow - timeCreation;

From here, you can use the different methods of COleDateTimeSpan to get the elapsed hours, minutes, etc.

Calculating kernel and user times

Per the documentation, the kernel and user times are amounts of time rather than an actual time period. The value in the FILETIME structure is expressed in 100-nanosecond units. To convert that to something useful, let's look at two methods.

Method 1

We can convert that to seconds with some basic arithmetic. A nanosecond is one billionth of a second, but since the time is already expressed in 100-nanosecond units, we'll only divide by 10 million:

__int64 i64Kernel = *((__int64 *) &ftKernel);
DWORD dwKernel = (DWORD) (i64Kernel / 10000000U);

As an alternative to the casting used above, a union could have just as easily been employed:

union
{
FILETIME ftKernel;
__int64 i64Kernel;
} timeKernel;

timeKernel.ftKernel = ftKernel;
DWORD dwKernel = (DWORD) (timeKernel.i64Kernel / 10000000U);

Either way, dwKernel now represents the number of elapsed seconds that the process has been in kernel mode. Converting seconds to hours, minutes, and seconds is a straightforward process.

Method 2

An alternative method that does not require anything other than a function call is to use the FileTimeToSystemTime API. This stores the result in a SYSTEMTIME structure, where we then have access to the wHour, wMinute, and wSecond members.

SYSTEMTIME stKernel;
FileTimeToSystemTime(&ftKernel, &stKernel);

The user-mode time is handled in the same way as kernel-mode time.

Summary

That's all there is to it. Looking at all of this together yields:

GetProcessTimes(hProcess, &ftCreation, &ftExit, &ftKernel, &ftUser);

timeCreation = ftCreation;

strData.Format("Created at %02d:%02d:%02d", timeCreation.GetHour(), 
               timeCreation.GetMinute(), timeCreation.GetSecond());

timeDiff = timeNow - timeCreation;
strData.Format("Elapsed time = %ud %uh %um %us", timeDiff.GetDays(), 
               timeDiff.GetHours(), timeDiff.GetMinutes(), 
               timeDiff.GetSeconds());

FileTimeToSystemTime(&ftKernel, &stKernel);
strData.Format("Time in kernel mode = %uh %um %us", stKernel.wHour,
               stKernel.wMinute, stKernel.wSecond);

Notes

The way the demo code is currently written, some system-level processes did not allow their name and time-information to be retrieved.

License

This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

A list of licenses authors might use can be found here

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About the Author

DavidCrow
Software Developer (Senior) Pinnacle Business Systems
United States United States

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Comments and Discussions

 
Generalprogram compiles but no process's are shown PinmemberjohnBgood12327-Nov-07 14:39 
QuestionCan I modify process create time, and HOW? PinmemberAll is New26-Jul-07 4:16 
QuestionHow to monitor processes on remote system? PinmemberAryan S2-May-07 19:10 
AnswerRe: How to monitor processes on remote system? PinmvpDavidCrow3-May-07 4:27 
Questionhow to get memory usage of each process PinmemberAlok the programmer14-Jul-04 3:12 
AnswerRe: how to get memory usage of each process [modified] PinmemberDavidCrow14-Jul-04 7:39 
GeneralRe: how to get memory usage of each process PinmemberMartial Spirit6-Jul-05 6:22 
GeneralRe: how to get memory usage of each process PinmemberDe@r3-Aug-09 4:25 
GeneralMissing file in project Pinmemberpranay5-May-04 1:51 
GeneralRe: Missing file in project Pinmembercoderider5-May-04 11:07 
GeneralRe: Missing file in project PinmemberDavidCrow6-May-04 4:35 
QuestionHow to get CPU usage per process? PinmemberAirport121-Apr-04 23:58 
AnswerRe: How to get CPU usage per process? PinmemberDavidCrow22-Apr-04 3:39 
GeneralRe: How to get CPU usage per process? [modified] Pinmembertermal20-Jul-07 2:24 
Hello,
thanks for this sample, i need little help to use this Frown | :( ,
i must to read the current cpu usage!
My program crash with Access violation after:
 // get the data
 pdhStatus = PdhCollectQueryData(hQuery);
 if (pdhStatus != ERROR_SUCCESS)
   __leave; // in my case program execution stops every time here! 
I recive an PDH_NO_DATA, what to do now?
// in header of:
#define PDH_NO_DATA                      ((DWORD)0x800007D5L)
 
//
// MessageId: PDH_CALC_NEGATIVE_DENOMINATOR
//
// MessageText:
//
//  A counter with a negative denominator value was detected.
//
i make something wrong, but idont know what! Frown | :(
By compilig there are no errors, nothing, looks ok!
 
thanks for help!
termal
 

 
-- modified at 9:03 Friday 20th July, 2007
QuestionRe: How to get CPU usage per process? PinmvpDavidCrow20-Jul-07 2:30 
AnswerRe: How to get CPU usage per process? Pinmembertermal20-Jul-07 3:21 
GeneralRe: How to get CPU usage per process? PinmvpDavidCrow20-Jul-07 3:24 
GeneralRe: How to get CPU usage per process? Pinmembertermal20-Jul-07 3:30 
GeneralRe: How to get CPU usage per process? PinmvpDavidCrow20-Jul-07 3:35 
AnswerRe: How to get CPU usage per process? Pinmemberdeee12313-Oct-04 4:59 
GeneralRe: How to get CPU usage per process? PinmemberDavidCrow13-Oct-04 5:08 
QuestionHow to get cpu cycles Pinmemberamarzee17-Sep-03 0:10 
AnswerRe: How to get cpu cycles PinmemberDavidCrow22-Apr-04 3:39 
GeneralIdle Apps Pinsussm.bergman1-Aug-03 5:29 
GeneralRe: Idle Apps PinmemberDavidCrow1-Aug-03 5:50 
GeneralProcess times under Win9x PinmemberMarc Heiligers23-Jun-03 21:09 
GeneralCheck Article Pinmemberwhizer19-Jun-03 5:21 
GeneralRe: Check Article PinmemberDavidCrow19-Jun-03 6:11 
GeneralRe: Check Article Pinmemberwhizer19-Jun-03 9:40 

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