Why Pan_task Is at 100%—and Why You Shouldn't Worry About It

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Quite often do we get questions on the pan_task process. 


Users wanting to check their device resources often try the following command:



show system resources follow




The 'follow' option will refresh the output every 2 seconds, allowing for a more accurate overview and not just a one time snapshot.


This command will spit out an output similar to the unix 'top' command as shown below:



show system resources follow

top - 09:53:13 up 2 days, 12:46, 1 user, load average: 2.11, 2.28, 2.35
Tasks: 139 total, 5 running, 134 sleeping, 0 stopped, 0 zombie
%Cpu(s): 59.4 us, 10.4 sy, 1.4 ni, 28.7 id, 0.1 wa, 0.0 hi, 0.0 si, 0.0 st
KiB Mem : 4119652 total, 373012 free, 2303588 used, 1443052 buff/cache
KiB Swap: 1972 total, 1972 free, 0 used. 1334224 avail Mem

3257 20 0 71324 35528 8048 R 100.0 0.9 3640:17 pan_task
3258 20 0 46488 10556 7976 R 94.4 0.3 3640:29 pan_task
13562 20 0 15988 3236 1292 R 11.1 0.1 0:00.02 sh



Many times, users start to panic seeing that one or more pan_task processes are almost reaching 100 percent. They worry that this process is hogging all the device resources, will bring it down, or will cause the device to malfunction in some way.


Depending on your hardware you will see a different number of pan_task processes. They are the individual software processes which perform packet processing on the dataplane (DP).  So, depending on the number of cores/dataplanes your device has you will see a different number of pan_task processes.


Have no fear—it is perfectly normal behavior for the pan_task process to reach 100 percent. 

Check out the following KB article on How to the interpret output of "show system resources" for multicore CPU


For a more accurate view on the dataplane load on your device it's better to use the following command instead:



show running resource-monitor



This command provides an overview of the Data Plane (DP) CPUs and buffer usage for various time intervals.  You can check the following KB on how to use this command: How to Interpret: show running resource-monitor


There are various articles that explain how to identify/debug/remedy high DP and/or high MP CPU load:


Identifying and fixing high CPU related issues isn't always straightforward and can be quite tedious at times. In case you have questions or need advice moving forward, don't hesitate to leave a comment in the section below or ask your question in the LIVEcommunity discussions area. Many enthusiasts read your questions and are willing to help out should you get stuck!


Thanks for taking time to read this blog!


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As always, we welcome all questions, comments and feedback in the comments section below.


Kiwi out!

Cyber Elite
Cyber Elite

Great Info Kiwi for rest of the Community Users!

L0 Member

Very helpful, Thank You

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