Monitor system performance in Windows 2000 Professional

The Performance console in Windows 2000 Professional is a handy tool that allows you to track your system's performance, enabling you to figure out what programs are taking up resources or causing problems. Here's how to find—and use—the console.

Windows 2000 Professional provides a tool called the Performance console that you can use to monitor and evaluate your system's performance; this comes in handy when you're troubleshooting or considering whether to upgrade your system. For example, slow disk performance may mean either a highly fragmented disk in need of defragmentation or simply slow hardware. If your system exhibits slow performance overall, you might want to monitor memory use to determine if you need more RAM or identify programs that are memory hogs.

You'll find the Performance console in the Administrative Tools folder. By default, the Performance console doesn't actually monitor anything. Instead, you have to add counters for the objects you want to monitor. So if you want to monitor disk performance, you'll have to add counters for the various disk properties in which you're interested, such as Disk Transfers Per Second and % Idle Time.

To add a counter:

  1. Open the Performance console and click the Add button on the toolbar in the right pane. It will look like a plus sign, (+).
  2. In the Add Counters dialog box, select the object from the Performance Object drop-down list whose performance you want to monitor, such as PhysicalDisk or Processor.
  3. Select the desired counters from the list and click the Add button.
  4. After you've added all the desired counters, click Close to close the dialog box.

Note that the Performance console begins monitoring objects as soon as you add the counter.

Because the Performance console is a standard MMC console, you can add it to your own custom consoles, integrating it with the other management tools you use often.

Miss a column?

Check out the Windows 2000 Professional archive, and catch up on all the W2K Pro columns.

Want more Win2K tips and tricks? Automatically sign up for our free Windows 2000 Professional newsletter, delivered each Tuesday!

Editor's Picks

Free Newsletters, In your Inbox