This is occurring on my MacBookPro, running OS 10.9.5.

I don't know what I might have done to change the behavior. When I executed ps before, it would show the username. Now, for some reason, instead of the username, it shows the uid of the person who executed the process.

I've read on this site and other sites that if the username is longer than 8 char, ps shows the uid. However, the output below shows that even for root, it shows the uid instead of the name root.

I know there's a workaround to execute

ps -jef

to show the username but I'd like to have my laptop go back to the old way of things.

Any help would be appreciated.

Here's the output for ps -ef

0   138     1   0 11:20PM ??         0:00.03 /usr/sbin/ntpd -c /private/etc/ntp-restrict.conf -n -g -p /var/run/ntpd.pid -f /var/db/ntp.drift
0   142    50   0 11:20PM ??         0:01.76 /Applications/Druva inSync/inSync.app/Contents/MacOS/inSyncDecommission 
1321896443   967   916   0 11:22PM ttys005    0:00.02 -bash 
1321896443  2865     1   0 11:35PM ttys005    0:09.32 /Library/Java/Home/bin/java -

Here's the output for ps -je

root              138     1   138      0    0 Ss     ??    0:00.03 /usr/sbin/ntpd -c /private/etc/ntp-restrict.conf -n -g -p /var/run/ntpd.pid -f /var/db/ntp.drift
root              142    50    50      0    0 S      ??    0:01.77 /Applications/Druva inSync/inSync.app/Contents/MacOS/inSyncDecommission
myfirst.mylast    967   916   967      0    1 S    s005    0:00.03 -bash
myfirst.mylast   2865     1  2788      0    0 S    s005    0:10.31 /Library/Java/Home/bin/java -

NOTE: I checked my .bash_profile, .bashrc, and .profile files but didn't see any alias for ps in them. Is there anywhere else that an alias of a command can hide?

Note #2: I can migrate this to the unix/linux or serverfault stack exchange site if it's more relevant there. I just put it here b/c this was on my MBP and not on a linux server.

  • Do the results of ps aux look familiar?
    – fd0
    Jul 6, 2016 at 11:15
  • @fd0, I usually use "ps -ef" but crazily "ps aux" shows my username. Weird. Any reason why this is? Thanks for this tip. Hopefully I can reprogram myself to use "ps aux" instead of "ps -ef". The output for "ps aux" is a little more verbose than I'm used to but at least it shows my username
    – Classified
    Jul 6, 2016 at 16:35


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