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Monitor system performance


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Monitor system performance

Task Manager is not the only utility in Windows XP that displays information about system performance. A great deal of information is also available within the Performance Monitor, located in the Administrative Tools folder.

When you open the Performance Monitor console, select the System Monitor node. You'll see the following three predefined counters that are monitored by default:

• Pages/sec: This counter displays the number of times per second the OS had to read or write to the paging file. If this number is constantly high--over 150, depending on the system--you most likely don't have enough RAM.

• Avg. Disk Queue Length: This counter monitors the length of queue with disk requests waiting to be serviced. If this number is frequently over two, it indicates a slow hard drive or high paging activity, which is a consequence of lacking RAM.

• % Processor Time: This counter displays the percentage of time that the processor spends executing a snippet of code. In other words, it shows you how busy the CPU is at that particular moment.

These three counters provide you with basic performance information. To monitor the network for more detailed information, click the Add [+] button. This will allow you to select from several hundred different performance counters.

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