How To Process Idle Time and Termination in Performance Monitor

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Sometimes it is desirable or necessary to determine when a process has ended when charting it in Performance Monitor. Use the Process|Elapsed Time counter to determine this.


When monitoring a process in Chart View in Performance Monitor (from either current activity or a log file) you might need to determine when a process has ended. The Processor|%Processor Time counter is not appropriate for such a determination because it shows only if the process is active or idle. Performance Monitor shows an idle process at 0 percent processor time; however, it also shows an ended process at 0 percent processor time (if it was running at one time during the current charting or logging procedure).

The Process|Elapsed Time counter, on the other hand, increments from zero from the moment a process is started and continues to increment until the process ends. After the process ends, this counter returns to zero. This is why this is the more appropriate counter to use for determining an ended process.

NOTE: If you start a process, end it, and then start it again (in which case it usually receives a different Process ID, or PID) the Process|Elapsed Time counter accounts for this as the same process.

TIP: You can use the Process|Elapsed Time counter for the CSRSS (the Win32 subsystem) process instance to determine when a system has trapped or otherwise shut down while charting or logging it with Performance Monitor, in additional to the usual methods (that is, bookmark notations in the Time window).


Article ID: 196727 - Last Review: February 21, 2014 - Revision: 2.2
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
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