The Skinny on ESXTOP

A reader named Mark contacted me today and asked if there was a way to reduce the size of the batch output from an ESXTOP run.  And he asks for good reason: Depending on the number of VM's on your host, the delay between ESXTOP samplings and the number of samples you collect, using the All Stats option (-a) can yield a massive file in a short period of time.  If written to a partition on your ESX Service Console you run the risk of filling the partition, and forget about actually being able to analyze the data in PERFMON or Excel.  For example, on an ESX host running ~15 VM's I produced 100MB … [Read more...]

vCenter Database Stats Rollup Troubleshooting

VMware vCenter collects performance statistics, tasks and events for historical performance analysis and auditing.  The collection level and retention of performance statistics can be controlled through the vCenter GUI (see Administration | vCenter Server Settings | Statistics).   The level of statistics collection and retention periods can have a dramatic impact on your vCenter Server's performance if not carefully planned and monitored.  In particular, the vCenter database can grow quite large and the database server required to support the increase in statistics increases in size and … [Read more...]

ESXTOP Batch Mode Analysis with Windows Perfmon

I needed to grab some stats from my ESX hosts for off-line analysis so I fired up my trusty ESXTOP intent on using batch mode to capture a .csv formatted output.  I started to manually select the counters I was interested in while working in ESXTOP interactive mode (you can save your selected counters to the esxtop configuration file with the 'w' command) and thought that there must be a better way.  I found that better way in the VMware Performance Community: http://communities.vmware.com/docs/DOC-3930.  There is now a -a switch that can be used to include ALL performance counters.  I'm … [Read more...]