Showing posts from March, 2008

dstat - Analyzing Linux System Performance

Knowing the effect of your application on the system and observing system performance while your application is going thru different scenarios can give you great insight about the bottlenecks and performance ceilings in your application. Today, lets look at some of the tools on Linux that will help us understand the system performance. dstat is a tool that shows various system performance parameters in real time. Install dstat on your Fedora system with "yum install -y dstat" or on your Debian based system with "apt-get install dstat"   Here's a screenshot of it working. Click on it to see the full image. Here, you can see various useful information that can tell you if system performance is throttled due to one or more of the resources being maxed out or if there is scope to improve performance by balancing the usage of the under-utilized resources. For example, on this specific system, you can see its resources are hardly utilized. It has capacity to

htop: more than top. pstree: ps with tree.

I'm a big fan of procexp and other sysinternals tools on Windows. Many people who use those and then come to Linux complain that there are no such tools in Linux. Most people are familiar with top and ps commands. I would like to introduce you to a bunch of utilities on Linux that are very useful while debugging issues. Lets start with htop, a better alternative to top. You can install htop on a yum based system like Fedora, Redhat, CentOS etc with "yum -y install htop" or with "apt-get install htop" on systems that are debian apt based like Ubuntu. htop is much better in displaying the process and resource information than top. It gives a more accurate and clearer picture of process memory usage than top. A screenshot of htop in action: It has many interesting features. It's display layout is refreshing different and nice. It can show tree view, a very important feature to understand the ancestry of a process. In the size column, the MB part is hig