Monitor Resource Usage (Performance Monitor)

Applies to: SQL Server - Windows only

If you are running Microsoft Windows server operating system, use the Performance Monitor graphical tool to measure the performance of SQL Server. You can view SQL Server objects, performance counters, and the behavior of other objects, such as processors, memory, cache, threads, and processes. Each of these objects has an associated set of counters that measure device usage, queue lengths, delays, and other indicators of throughput and internal congestion.

Benefits of Performance Monitor

Performance Monitor can be useful to monitor Windows operating system and SQL Server counters at the same time to determine any correlation between the performance of SQL Server and Windows. For example, monitoring the Windows disk input/output (I/O) counters and the SQL Server Buffer Manager counters at the same time can reveal the behavior of the entire system.

Performance Monitor allows you to obtain statistics on current SQL Server activity and performance. Using Performance Monitor, you can:

  • View data simultaneously from any number of computers.

  • View and change charts to reflect current activity, and show counter values that are updated at a frequency that the user defines.

  • Export data from charts, logs, alert logs, and reports to spreadsheet or database applications for further manipulation and printing.

  • Add system alerts that list an event in the alert log and can notify you by issuing a network alert.

  • Run a predefined application the first time or every time a counter value goes over or under a user-defined value.

  • Create log files that contain data about various objects from different computers.

  • Append to one file selected sections from other existing log files to form a long-term archive.

  • View current-activity reports, or create reports from existing log files.

  • Save individual chart, alert, log, or report settings, or the entire workspace setup for reuse.

Performance Monitor performance

When you monitor SQL Server and the Microsoft Windows operating system to investigate performance-related issues, concentrate your initial efforts in three main areas:

  • Disk activity

  • Processor utilization

  • Memory usage

Monitoring a computer on which Performance Monitor is running can affect computer performance slightly. Therefore, either log the Performance Monitor data to another disk (or computer) so that it reduces the effect on the computer being monitored, or run Performance Monitor from a remote computer. Monitor only the counters in which you are interested. If you monitor too many counters, resource usage overhead is added to the monitoring process and affects the performance of the computer that is being monitored.

Performance Monitor tasks

Task Description Topic
Describes when to use Performance Monitor and discusses performance overhead when you use Performance Monitor. Run Performance Monitor
Describes how to monitor disk counters to determine disk activity and the amount of I/O generated by their SQL Server components. Monitor Disk Usage
Describes how to monitor an instance of Microsoft SQL Server to determine whether CPU usage rates are within normal ranges. Monitor CPU Usage
Describes how to monitor an instance of SQL Server to confirm that memory usage is within typical ranges. Monitor Memory Usage
Describes how to create an alert that is raised when a threshold value for a Performance Monitor counter has been reached. Create a SQL Server Database Alert
Describes how to you create charts, alerts, logs, and reports to monitor an instance of SQL Server. Create Charts, Alerts, Logs, and Reports
Lists objects and counters that Performance Monitor uses to monitor activity in computers running an instance of SQL Server. Use SQL Server Objects
Lists objects and counters that Performance Monitor uses to monitor In-Memory OLTP activity. SQL Server XTP (In-Memory OLTP) Performance Counters