How to monitor Web server performance by using counter logs in System Monitor in IIS

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Article ID: 313064
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Summary

This step-by-step article describes how to create and configure counter logs in System Monitor so that you can monitor Web server performance.

In System Monitor, you can create logs to automatically collect server activity data at specified intervals. You can then use this data to help you identify the cause of delays, and to tune your server for optimal performance.

System Monitor uses counters to track the activity of specific objects (services or mechanisms that control server resources). In addition to the objects and counters that are included with Microsoft Windows 2000 Server, Internet Information Services (IIS) 5.0 installs counters that monitor Web server performance. These counters include global IIS counters, Web service counters, File Transfer Protocol (FTP) service counters, and Active Server Pages (ASP) program counters. Global IIS counters monitor the activity of all IIS services, such as bandwidth usage and caching. Web service, FTP service, and ASP program counters monitor connection activity.

How to Create a Counter Log

To create a counter log:
  1. Click Start, point to Programs, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Performance.
  2. Double-click Performance Logs and Alerts in the console tree, and then click Counter Logs.
  3. Right-click an empty area in the right details pane.
  4. Type a name for the log in the New Log Settings dialog box, and then click OK.
  5. Click the General tab, and then click Add.
  6. Click the object that you want to monitor (for example, click Web Service) in the Performance object box, click either All counters or Select counters from list, and then click the counter or counters that you want to log.

    NOTE: To view a description of a counter, click the counter, and then click Explain.
  7. To monitor all instances of the selected counter, click All instances. To monitor specific instances of the selected counters, click Select instances from list, and then click the instances that you want to monitor.
  8. Click Add.
  9. Repeat step 6 through step 8 to add the counters that you want to log. When you are finished, click Close.
  10. Specify the value that you want in the Interval box, and then click the unit of time that you want in the Unit box.
  11. Click OK.

How to Configure a Counter Log

To configure a counter log:
  1. Click Start, point to Programs, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Performance.
  2. Double-click Performance Logs and Alerts in the console tree, and then click Counter Logs.
  3. Double-click the log that you want to configure in the right details pane.
  4. Click the Log Files tab, and then specify the options that you want by performing any of the following steps:
    • Accept the default location or specify the location that you want for the log file in the Log file name box, and then specify the log file name options that you want.
    • Specify the format that you want for the log file in the Log file type box. For example, Binary File.
    • Specify whether you want to limit the size of the log file in the Log file size box.
  5. Click the Schedule tab, and then use the following steps:
    1. To configure logging in the Start log box:
      • To configure the logging to start manually, click Manually (using the shortcut menu).

        -or-
      • To configure the logging to start at a specified time and date, click At, and then specify the time and date that you want the logging to start.
    2. Use the following steps to configure the information in the Stop log box:
      • Click Manually (using the shortcut menu) to manually stop the logging.

        -or-
      • Click After, and then specify a period of time after which the logging automatically stops.

        -or-
      • Click At, and then specify the time and date that you want the logging to stop.

        -or-
      • Click When the size log file is full, where size is the log file size limit that you set on the Log Files tab. This option is available only if you specify a log file size limit in the Limit of box on the Log Files tab.
    3. Specify the option that you want (if any) in the When a log file closes box.
  6. Click OK.

How to Choose Counters

There are hundreds of counters from which you can choose to monitor server activity. The following list describes the counters that are useful for monitoring the load on your Web server, and provides ideal values for each.

Collapse this tableExpand this table
Object or counterIdeal value
Memory or pages per secondZero to 20 (indicates trouble if over 80)
Memory or available bytesAt least 4 megabytes (MB)
Memory or committed bytesNot more than 75 percent of physical memory size
Memory or pool nongpaged bytesSteady (a slow rise may indicate a memory leak)
Processor or percent of processor timeLess than 75 percent
Processor or system processor queue lengthLess than 2
Disk (logical or physical) or percent disk timeAs low as possible
Disk (logical or physical) or queue lengthLess than 2
Disk (logical or physical) or average disk bytes per transferAs high as possible
IIS global or cache hits percentAs high as possible
Web service or bytes total per secondAs high as possible
ASP or request wait timeAs low as possible
ASP or requests queuedZero
ASP or transactions per secondAs high as possible

References

For more information about how to create and use counter logs in which to monitor server performance, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
248345 How to create a log using System Monitor in Windows
238145 How to monitor bandwidth throttling
For additional information about how to enable IIS logging, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
300390 How To Enable IIS Logging Site Activity
For more information about how to optimize IIS, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
308186 How to optimize Web server performance in Windows 2000
305313 Optimizing Internet Information Services 5.0
For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
323312 How to create an IIS baseline by using performance log analysis
For more information about how to gather individual baseline information, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
323314 How to create an IIS baseline by using the Memory object
323315 How to create an IIS baseline by using the Processor object
323316 How to create an IIS baseline by using the Active Server pages object
323317 How to create an IIS baseline by using the Web service object

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Article ID: 313064 - Last Review: June 19, 2014 - Revision: 4.0
Keywords: 
kbenv kbhowto kbhowtomaster KB313064
Retired KB Content Disclaimer
This article was written about products for which Microsoft no longer offers support. Therefore, this article is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.

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