I'm just curious what 'Getty' is and what it does. The past few days I have noticed that there are always at least six instances of it in System Monitor, each using about 640 KiB memory and status says "n_tty_read".

What does this mean?


1 Answer 1


getty is what sits on the text-mode consoles and waits for someone to log in. It configures the tty device and spawns login when typed at; historically it adapted to the communications line based on what it received, but especially on VCs this is no longer necessary.

  • Ok, I just don't understand why I would have 6 going all the time. Is this anything to be concerned about or is this something that is harmless?
    – jredkai
    Apr 8, 2012 at 15:07
  • This is nothing to be concerned about. It is common to have six virtual terminals each of which will have getty running unless you are logged in.
    – BillThor
    Apr 8, 2012 at 20:08
  • Is it okay to remove getty from server? I just need assurance that it won't affect logins of users. Aug 29, 2017 at 10:26

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