Monitoring SMS/SCCM performance


Monitoring SMS Activity


You can use Performance Monitor utility to track various processes on a Windows system in real time. The utility uses a graphical display that you can use to view current data, or log data. You can specify specific elements or components that should be tracked. You can determine resource usage by monitoring trends.  


With Performance Monitor, objects, counters and instances are used to monitor the system. An object is a collection of counters which are associated with a system resource or service. As the object executes a function, its associated counters are updated. A counter represents data for a particular component of the system or service. Each object has a set of counters. An instance refers to the incident of multiple performance objects of the identical type on a computer. An object can have one or multiple instances.


The objects most commonly used to monitor network activity are listed below:



  • Browser object, monitors the Browser service for the domain or the workgroup
  • Cache object, monitors disk cache usage
  • Memory object, monitors physical and virtual memory performance
  • Objectsobject, monitors the events, processes and threads on the computer as data is collected.
  • Paging File object, monitors page file usage
  • Physical Disk object, monitors the hard disks
  • Process object, monitors the processes running on the computer
  • Processorobject, monitors the processors on the system.
  • Server object, monitors items such as bytes, sessions, pool paged usage, and pool non-paged usage.
  • System object, monitors counters associated with system hardware and software
  • Thread object, monitors threads running in the system

When you install SMS 2.0, a number of SMS specific counters are added in Performance Monitor, and are displayed when the SMS site server is started. In addition to using SMS specific performance counters, there are a number of other objects and counters that should be used to monitor system performance, and identify resource and processing bottlenecks.


The subsystems which should be monitored when monitoring system performance are listed below:



  • Memory subsystem
  • Network subsystem
  • Processor subsystem
  • Processes subsystem
  • Disk subsystem

It is recommended that you use the following Performance Monitor objects and counters to monitor overall SMS system performance, detect disk usage issues, and identify resource and processing bottlenecks:



  • Memory\Committed Bytes:This counter indicates the number of committed bytes of virtual memory on the system, and should be monitored together with the Memory\Available Bytes counter if you suspect that a memory leak exists.
  • Memory\Available Bytes: The counter indicates what your available memory capacity is. To efficiently run a server, you need to have at least 4MB of memory available. When the memory drops below 4MB, you might need to immediately add more memory.
  • Memory\Pages/Sec: With a recommended counter threshold of 20, this counter indicates the rate at which pages are written to disk or read from disk. The counter should generally be beneath 20.
  • Network Interface\Bytes Total/sec; Bytes Sent/sec; Bytes Received/sec: These counters indicate the manner in which your network adapters are performing in relation to network traffic.
  • Physical Disk\% Disk Time; Physical Disk\ Avg. Disk Queue Length: A memory shortage would exist if an increase in queue length is not followed by a decrease in the Memory\ Page Read/Sec counter value. System performance is typically satisfactory if the Physical Disk\% is equal to, or lower than 80 percent.
  • Physical Disk\ Current Disk Queue Length: The counter indicates the number of requests which are in queue for disk access. The counters should be consistently at 1.5 to 2 times the number of spindles which comprise of the physical disk.
  • Physical Disk\ Disk Reads/Sec and Disk Writes/Sec: These counters show the speed at which data is written to disk and read from disk. The information of these counters could assist you in more efficiently balancing the load of your servers. A lengthy delay could be indicative of a hard disk issue. When usage is close to the defined transfer rate of the physical disk, you might need to consider decreasing the load of the server. You could also upgrade to RAID.
  • Processor\% Processor Time: This counter should be tracked if you want to detect a process which is utilizing over 85 percent of the processor time. In this case, you might have to consider either upgrading the processor, or installing an additional processor.
  • Processor\% User Time: This counter indicates the non-idle processor time percentage which takes place in user mode. If the value of the counter is constantly high, consider upgrading the processor, or installing an additional processor.
  • Processor\ Interrupts/Sec: This counter shows the number of interrupts which are being received from devices. An increase in the counter’s value should be accompanied by an increase in system activity. If not, you could have an existing hardware issue that needs to be resolved.
  • SQL Server\ ache Hit Ratio: Shows the number of times that SQL Server requests were resolved using the SQL Server cache instead of querying the SQL databases.
  • Server\Bytes Total/Sec: This counter indicates how busy the server is, and displays the number of bytes which the server has sent to and received from the network. A drastic increase in this counter value could indicate that you need to add more memory.
  • Server Work Queues\Queue Length: The counter shows what the queue length of the Server Work queue is. An acceptable value for this counter is four. If there are constantly over four items in the queue, it could be indicative of processor congestion.
  • System\ Processor Queue Length: This counter shows the number of requests waiting in queue to be processed. If you constantly have a queue length of over 10 for a processor, you may have an existing bottleneck.

The SMS specific performance objects and counters added when you install SMS are listed here:



  • SMS Discovery Data Manager object: The associated counters are:

    • DDRs Processed/minute; indicates the number of discovery data records (DDRs) that Discovery Data Manager processed in the last minute.
    • Total Bad DDRs Processed; indicates the number of invalid DDRs processed by the Discovery Data Manager in the existing session.
    • Total DDRs Enqueued; indicates how many discovery data records are in the input queue of the Discovery Data Manager. The processed discovery data records are not included.
    • Total DDRs Processed; indicates the total number of DDRs processed by the Discovery Data Manager in the existing session.

  • SMS Executive Thread States object: The associated counters are:

    • Running Thread Count; indicates the number of running SMS threads.
    • Sleeping Thread Count; specifies the number of threads blocked in Yield functions – pending conditions defined by the blocked threads.
    • Yielding Thread Count; specifies the number of threads blocked in Yield functions – cannot run because the running threads need to be limited.

  • SMS In-Memory Queues object: The associated counters are:

    • Total Objects Dequeued; indicates the total number of objects added to the queue by a specific component since the source and destination components were last started.
    • Total Objects Enqueued; indicates the total number of objects which the destination component removed from the queue since the source and destination components were last started.

  • SMS Inventory Data Loader object: The associated counters are:

    • MIFs Processed/minute; indicates the total number of inventory records, Management Information Format (MIF) files, processed by the Inventory Data Loader in the last minute.
    • Total Bad MIFs Processed; represents the total number of invalid inventory records processed by the Inventory Data Loader in this session.
    • Total MIFs Enqueued; specifies the number of inventory records in the input queue of the Inventory Data Loader.
    • Total MIFs Processed; indicates the total number of inventory records, Management Information Format (MIF) files, processed by the Inventory Data Loader in the current session.

  • SMS Software Inventory Processor object: The associated counters are:

    • SINVs Processed/minute; indicates the total number of software inventory records (SINVs) processed by the Software Inventory Processor in the last minute.
    • Total Bad SINVs Processed; represents the total number of invalid SINVs processed by the Software Inventory Processor in this session.
    • Total SINVs Enqueued; specifies the number of SINVs in the input queue of the Software Inventory Processor.
    • Total SINVs Processed; indicates the total number of SINVs processed by the Software Inventory Processor in the current session.

  • SMS Standard Sender object: The associated counters are:

    • Average Bytes/sec; represents the average throughput of the sender for all SMS sites or for a specific site.
    • Current Bytes being Sent; indicates the current number of bytes that sending threads are trying to write to all SMS sites or to a specific SMS site.
    • Sending Thread Count; indicates the number of threads currently sending to the destination.
    • Total Bytes Attempted; specifies the number of bytes that the specific sender has tried to send, as from the time when it started running.
    • Total Bytes Failed; indicates the number of bytes that the specific sender failed to send, as from the time when it started running.
    • Total Bytes Sent; represents the total number of bytes which the sender has successfully sent to all SMS sites or to a specific SMS site.

  • SMS Status Messages object: The associated counters are:

    • Corrupt; represents the total number of corrupted status message files that the Status Message Manager received from the Status Manager inbox, from when the Status Message Manager was last started.
    • Processed/sec; indicates the number of status messages which the Status Message Manager received, from when the Status Message Manager was last started.
    • Replicated at High Priority; indicates the number of status messages which the Status Message Manager replicated to the parent site through high priority, from when the Status Message Manager was last started.
    • Replicated at Low Priority; indicates the number of status messages which the Status Message Manager replicated to the parent site through low priority, from when the Status Message Manager was last started.
    • Replicated at Normal Priority; indicates the number of status messages which the Status Message Manager replicated to the parent site through normal priority, from when the Status Message Manager was last started.
    • Reported To Application Event Log; indicates the number of status messages which the Status Message Manager reported to the Windows application event log, from when the Status Message Manager was last started.
    • Written To SMS Database; indicates the number of status messages which the Status Message Manager has written to the SMS site database, from when the Status Message Manager was last started.

The Health Monitor utility, HealthMon, is a component in SMS that you can use to obtain a view of the status a Windows based computer. Health Monitor utilizes the objects and counters of Performance Monitor to determine status threshold levels and to collect gather data. With Health Monitor, the threshold levels are called monitoring policies. You have to though manually install the utility. The HealthMon Agent must be installed on each computer system that you want to monitor.


The Health Monitor objects and their associated counters are listed here:



  • Exchange Server object; contains the MSEXCHANGEDS Service Started, MSEXCHANGEIS Service Started, MSEXCHANGEMTA Service Started, and MSEXCHANGESA Service Started counters.
  • Fault object contains the Pool Non-Paged Failures, Pool Paged Failures, and Sessions Errored Out counters.
  • IIS Server object contains the IIS Service Started counter.
  • Logical Disk object contains the Percent Free Disk Space counter.
  • Memory object; contains the Available Memory Bytes, Pages Per Second, Page Reads Per Second, Percent Committed Bytes to Limit, and Pool Non-Paged Bytes counters.
  • Network Interface object contains the Excessive Network Traffic Bytes Total/Sec counter.
  • Paging File object contains the Percent Peak Usage and Percent Usage counters.
  • Physical Disk object contains the Disk Queue Length, Diskperf Driver Started, and Percent Disk Time counters.
  • Process object; contains the Interrupts Per Second and Percent Total System Time counters.
  • Security object; contains the Errors Access Permission and Errors Logon counters.
  • Server Work Queues object; contains the Context Blocks Queued/Sec and Processor Queue Length counters.
  • SMS object; contains the SMS_Executive Service Started, SMS_Site_Component_Manager Service Started, and SMS_SQL_Monitor Service Started counters.
  • SNA Server object; contains the Host Connection Status and SNABASE Service Started counters.
  • SQL Server object; contains the MSDTC Service Started and MSSQL Server Service Started counters.

You can use the SMS Service Manager to monitor and control the status of SMS components:



  • Started
  • Stopped
  • Paused
  • Resumed

The SMS Service Manager provides a view of the following information:



  • SMS components and services running on the SMS site server.
  • SMS components and services running on each SMS site system.

The SMS Trace utility can be used to display and view SMS log file content. With the SMS Trace utility, you can open and view multiple log files at the same time. You can also search and select text. The log file view displayed in the SMS Trace utility is also dynamically updated as the log file changes. This means that all new log file entries are displayed without you having to reopen the file. The SMS Trace utility is not automatically installed when you install the SMS site server. You have to manually install the utility.


The SMS 2.0 installation CD-ROM contains a number of troubleshooting tools located beneath the \SUPPORT\RESKIT directory which you can utilize for the following tasks:



  • Manage the site hierarchy and the site database.
  • Manage and examine inventory and software distribution
  • Examine client computer discovery data
  • Manage and remove client components
  • Configure the Remote Tools Client Agent
  • Examine the log files and to schedule files

How to create a Performance Monitor chart



  1. Open Performance Monitor.
  2. Click the Edit menu and then click Add To Chart.
  3. The Add To Chart dialog box opens.
  4. In the Computer box, provide the name of the system being monitored. Click the Browse button to locate the system name.
  5. In the Object drop-down list box, choose the object.
  6. In the Counter list box, specify the counter.
  7. In the Instance box, specify the instance.
  8. Use the Color, Scale, Width and Style drop-down list boxes to specify the desired settings for the chart lines.
  9. Click the Add button to start the charting process.

How to create a Performance Monitor log



  1. Open Performance Monitor.
  2. Click the View menu and then select Log.
  3. The Performance Monitor Log window opens.
  4. Click the Edit menu and select Add To Log.
  5. The Add To Log dialog box opens.
  6. Specify each particular object that you want to collect information for in the Objects list and then click Add.
  7. After all the required objects are added, click Done.
  8. The Performance Monitor Log window is displayed.
  9. Click the Options menu and then click Log.
  10. The Log Options dialog box opens.
  11. Specify the name for the log file.
  12. Specify where the log file should be stored.
  13. Specify the update interval.
  14. Click the Start Log button to start collecting the required data.
  15. The Performance Monitor Log window is displayed.
  16. Check the File Size box to monitor the log file size.
  17. Once the desired data has been collected, click the Options menu and then click Log.
  18. When the Log Options dialog box opens, click the Stop Log button.
  19. To save the log file, click the Options menu and then click Log.
  20. When the Log Options dialog box opens, click the Save button.

How to create a chart using log file data



  1. Open Performance Monitor.
  2. Click the Options menu and then click Data.
  3. The Data From dialog box dialog box opens.
  4. Provide the name of the log file and then click OK.
  5. Click the Edit menu and then click Add To Chart from the shortcut menu.
  6. The Add To Chart dialog box opens.
  7. Use the list of available objects and their associated counters to create the log chart.

How to add the systems to monitor in the Health Monitor console



  1. Open the Health Monitor console. If this is the first time that you are going to use Health Monitor to monitor systems, then no monitored systems will appear in the Health Monitor console.
  2. In the console tree, right-click Monitored Systems and select New and then System from the shortcut menu.
  3. The New Monitored System dialog box opens.
  4. In the textbox, provide the name of the system which you want to monitor.
  5. Click OK.
  6. In the console tree of the Health Monitor console, expand the mew monitored system entry that you created to display the components status and events status of the system.

How to configure Health Monitor



  1. Open the Health Monitor console.
  2. Right-click the monitored system that you want to configure and then select Properties from the shortcut menu.
  3. The System Properties dialog box opens.
  4. On the General tab, select the components which you want to monitor by selecting the checkbox alongside each component which should be enabled.
  5. Click OK.

How to use the SMS Service Manager



  1. Open the SMS Administrator console.
  2. Expand the Tools node.
  3. Select the SMS Service Manager node.
  4. Click the Action menu, select All Tasks and then select Start SMS Service Manager.
  5. In the SMS Service Manager, the SMS site components for the site are listed using two methods:

    • The Components node contains all components for the site.
    • The Servers node contains the components listed according to site system.

  6. For the components that are displayed in the details pane of the SMS Service Manager, you can sort them in ascending order or in descending order.

How to view log files in SMS Trace



  1. Navigate to the Systems Management Server program group and then start the SMS Trace utility.
  2. The SMS Tracer window opens.
  3. Click the File menu and then click Open.
  4. The Open dialog box opens.
  5. Choose the log file thats content you want to view, and then click OK.
  6. The SMS Tracer window displays the contents of the log file.

 


Info from a good article at http://www.tech-faq.com/monitoring-sms.shtml


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