How can you monitor windows system performance for free

how-can-you-monitor-windows-system-performance-for-free-photoWith a 266 MHz CPU, 64 MB RAM, one two-gigabyte hard drive with a single NTFS partition and a 10 MBPS Ethernet card running Windows NT Workstation, you are very aware your computer is no longer cutting edge. You want to create a baseline of your computer’s performance, so you can demonstrate the need for a new computer during the next budget cycle. You have not performed any monitoring in the past, so you would like to capture statistics on two critical system areas.

Required result

Capture CPU performance statistics.

Optional desired results

Capture physical disk performance statistics

Create a baseline of CPU and physical disk performance statistics

Proposed solution

Using Performance Monitor add a counter for Processor: %Processor Time and Processor: Interrupts/Sec.

Using Performance Monitor add a counter for Physical Disk/Logical Disk: %Disk Time and Physical Disk/Logical Disk: Current Disk Queue Length.

Under Performance Monitor select View | Report to create a display in numeric form.


Sample data every 15 minutes for a typical workday.

Save the report settings after you have finished the data collection.

Repeat this process for five business days.

Export the data from each report to a CSV file. Import the file into Excel and establish the baseline performance.

By using Performance Monitor to capture the Processor counters you will satisfy the required result. Windows NT Workstation does not ship with Physical/Logical disk counters available. To gain this functionality you need to run the command line based DISKPERF.EXE program with the -y command line. This turns of disk performance monitoring and adds several disk-related counters. This does not satisfy the optional desired results.

The proposed solution meets the required result but none of the optional desired results.