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[chat] Killing run away scripts

I have a program last compiled in May no significant change in data just decided to loop, Oracle update lots of processes eventually crippling the box, the database is on the same box. The whole thing took 36 hours to notice we were having 'issues'. Big brother here we come.

What I was thinking is how I can register a kill command after a couple of hours. This whole process takes minutes and if it is hours then it has screwed up. Is there anyway of doing this portably between unices.