In case of a sluggish computer, you may want to check the performance of system’s components in order to find the culprit that is causing the slow performance.
This tool, an MMC snap-in, helps you monitor the performance of your system. You can see real-time performance as well access its past performance records.
Performance Monitor measures the health of your computer by monitoring individual system components like hard disk, CPU, memory, etc. In order to monitor, it takes several performance counters into account, like
The Performance Monitor is visually divided into 3 panes.
The first screen of the application shows a summary of the system components.
In the “System Summary” section of the description pane, you can view real-time activities of the following components.
In order to monitor currently running activities, go to Tree Pane > Monitoring Tools > Performance Monitor
You can see a graph being sketched in real time. The graph collects its data from various performance counters.
The default counter is usually % Processor Time. However, you can add more counters to the monitoring. Each counter will have a dedicated line on the graph.
In the above figure, I set up three counters – % Processor Time, % Idle Time and % Disk Read Time.
There is a one-stop toolbar, from where you can
Click on the “+” button on the toolbar to add a counter. This will launch a small window.
It lists all the performance counters categorized according to their functions. Click on Add in order to add the selected counter.
Using Performance Monitor, you can also monitor a network computer. You just need to select the appropriate computer in the drop down here. This will select the performance counters of that computer.
Click on the typing pad icon to open the properties of Performance Monitor. The properties are divided into 5 tabs of a small window.
The configurations applied to a real-time monitor are lost as soon as you close the Performance Monitor.
You can create data collector sets, which store predefined monitoring configurations. When you run a data collector set, Performance Monitor starts sketching a graph based on the settings specified by the set. Also, the data collected during monitoring is stored as a report.
A data collector set contains several data collector. Each data collector has a list of performance counters that defines the type of data to be collected.
“Data Collector Sets” node of the tree pane hosts all the collector sets. It further branches into two nodes.
In order to create a set:
Right click on “User Defined” node * New * Data Collector Set. A wizard will launch that will guide you through the creation process.
All that the wizard needs is:
After the set is created, you can start the monitoring using the context menu or Actions pane.
As a sample, I created a Demo Data Collector Set. It contains two Data Collectors – one collects data for hard disk performance, while the other collects data for processor performance.
You can customize the properties of a Data Collector through its Properties window.
Right click on the Collector * Select Properties.
You can add or remove performance counters. Also, you can set the location and format of the log file.
The data generated by the Data Collectors can be viewed anytime through reports. The reports are stored under the “Reports” node of the tree pane.
Similar to the Data Collector Sets, they are categorized into User Defined and System reports.
A report generates a static graph based on the data collected by the corresponding Data Collector Set.
It also lists the counters that were used to generate the graph data.