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I'm getting this error whenever executing the top command in Linux remotely via SSH:

top: Unknown terminal "dumb" in $TERM

My Java application which monitors the performance of the remote machine uses the output of top command.

How can I fix this problem?

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Try passing the -b option to top. From the manual:

b Batch mode. Useful for sending output from top to other programs or to a file. In this mode, top will 
  not accept command line input. It runs until it produces the number of iterations requested with the n 
  option or until killed. Output is plain text suitable for display on a dumb terminal.
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I got the above mentioned message while using the -b option on Slackware. Top seems to be looking for dumb terminal definition when output is send to a file. – L.R. Mar 19 at 22:34

top probably could not find "dumb" terminal definition neither in file $HOME/.terminfo/d/dumb nor /usr/share/terminfo/d/dumb at the remote machine.

Maybe that file is placed in other location - just copy it or make a symlink. If it does not exist at all then get that file from some other linux system and place it in one of the above mentioned locations

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