For those not familiar with it, the unix commands nice
can be used to alter the priorities (think percentage of CPU time) given to running tasks. However, like many UNIX commands, they are not 'user friendly' by any stretch. First you need to do a ps
to see what's running, and then you need to remember the command syntax to change the values.
I spotted a thread on the Mac OS X Forums
that discussed this very topic. Forum user "Iambob" took it upon himself to write a GUI wrapper for nice
, which would present all the jobs with their current priorities, and allow easy tweaking of the values. Quite logically, he named his program nicer
You can find nicer here
, and I must say it's a very useful progam. There's some work he'd like to do relative to optimization, but the basic functionality is there, and it's basically self-explanatory: double-click a process to change its priority. It takes a while to launch, but don't worry, it's not crashing your OS.
I think this program is a great example of what we'll see as we progress towards OS X 1.0: GUI wrappers around the core UNIX commands to make them more useful to the typical Mac user. Thanks, IamBob!
[Editor's note: Version 1.0 of nicer is now available at the above link!]