Windows Server Performance Monitor - Data Collector Sets and Alerts
Performance Monitor Data Collector Sets and Alerts
This page will show you how to design a Data Collection Set, this is the new name for Performance Monitor Alerts. An alert is like a guard that rings an alarm bell when an interesting event occurs. Alerts are a great way of troubleshooting those intermittent problems when 'Mr Nobody' is around to see what actually happened.
Performance Alert Topics
Introduction to Alerts and Data Collection Sets
If you take the time to design Alerts or Collection Sets, then you will be rewarded with advance knowledge of problems. As you research the triggers and actions, so you will learn more about how a healthy operating system functions.
Keep an eye out for similarities and differences between Logs and Alerts. For example, Alerts show up in the Application Event Log where as log counters are displayed in the Monitor. Also remember that you can schedule Alerts and Collection Sets in thee same way that you can schedule Logs.
Window Server 2008 introduces 'Data Collector Sets', which you can employ to a create data set containing performance counters. Historically, the problem with Performance Monitor in Windows has been its complexity. To help you cut through the maze of settings Microsoft has introduced Data collector sets. The idea is to supply pre-defined templates to tackle a specific area. Windows Server 2008 supplies two main types of template, diagnostics or performance.
From the custom data set you can configure alert activities for when the performance counters are exceeded. Naturally, once you have defined the Data Collector Set, you must configure the actions that Windows Server 2008 will undertake when the alert thresholds are reached.
Detailed Instructions How to Create Alerts in Server
Trap: The Data Collector Set must run as a user who is a member of the Performance Log Users group, alternatively, they can run as a member of the Administrator's group.
Other Considerations: You could schedule the Data Collection Set to run at a certain time. It's often helpful to set a 'Stop condition'. Both strategies are to prevent you being swamped with data.
SolarWinds' Network Performance Monitor will help you discover what's happening on your network. This utility will also guide you through troubleshooting; the dashboard will indicate whether the root cause is a broken link, faulty equipment or resource overload.
Perhaps the NPM's best feature is the way it suggests solutions to network problems. Its second best feature is the ability to monitor the health of individual VMware virtual machines. If you are interested in troubleshooting, and creating network maps, then I recommend that you give this Network Performance Monitor a try.
Our goal is to set an performance monitor alert when the processor reaches 70%. The method and screen shots are taken from Windows Server 2003, however the principles are valid for earlier Microsoft operating systems.
Summary for Alerts
With Windows Server 2008, Vista and Windows 7 Microsoft has made it much easier to configure alerts by providing Data Collection Sets. These pre-defined templates contain all the counters you would need to tackle a project such as Wireless network performance.
Monitoring Alerts is particularly for intermittent problems with Windows Server 2003. Set an alter to trigger when the counter reaches a suitable threshold. Knowing what values to set is a mystery at first, but if you persevere then you will soon see what worked and what values need adjusting.
At first you wonder where the successful alerts are to be found, but you soon realize the answer: launching the Event Viewer and examining the Application Log.
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