I am back with Part 2 of the Perfinsights. If you were reading the first part, then you will know what I am talking about. We left off where I was about to open the HTML report.
The extracted folder should look like this:
The HTML file is the actual report and the rest of the folders is the generated data.
So, reading the report is a little trickier than running the tool. This is because if you didn’t catch the performance you were looking for then you’re not going to see much going on. Back to the last screenshot from the first part. We are going to double click on the “PerfInsights Report.html” file. It will launch the html file in IE (if not open in IE) as it’s Microsoft and it is designed to display correctly in IE. It will probably work with other browsers but that is what I was told. Make sure to click the “Allow blocked content” as soon as you see it. It will disappear and you will have to reopen it again.
If everything works right, then you should get an overall display like this:
The overview will tell you what findings the tool found and rate them in severity from low to high. The nice thing about the tool is that if it finds something and there is a blog or page or a how to, it will link it to the findings. In my case, I will select the storage analysis. When I click on the link, it loads the following page:
You can see it has given me some recommendations that I should do to my VM. Because the tool is designed for Azure, all the references to machines will have Azure in the title. It may still take you to an Azure based link, but a suggestion is better than none. It at least will give you some ideas of what the problems could be. Next I will go ahead and expand one of the suggestions. I will expand the first one labeled “High”. When I click on the + symbol I get the following:
(I zoomed out to fit all the info on one screenshot, sorry folks)
The Finding is showing me the SQL files that are on the impacted resources because of the way its installed on the drive. The recommendation from the tool is to have allocations adjusted to 64kb. The References column also has a link to the documentation that explains why its recommending that.
When I click the actual link for References, it takes me to here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/previous-versions/sql/sql-server-2005/administrator/cc966412(v=technet.10)?redirectedfrom=MSDN#EEAA
As you can see, it’s the SQL server best practices article about… you guessed it, Best Practices. And this is just looking at the Overview tab, there are 6 other tabs that you can review.
Even if the tool doesn’t find anything wrong in a particular area, it still collects useful information. If you check out the CPU tab, you can see top CPU using processes. In my case, elastic search is a top contender in using my CPU. It may not be causing a problem (now) but its good information to see.
If you check out the Memory tab, you will find similar results.
Again, even though the tool didn’t find anything wrong with the usage, you can still use the tool itself to collect data. Lastly, my favorite tab, is the Network tab. Under the network tab you get several other sub tabs. They show general configuration, TCP/IP ports, netstat and firewall settings.
The General Tab shows configuration settings:
For the TCP/IP you can see what is enabled or not and some Parameters
The Netstat tab will show you what ports are listening or close_wait, established, etc. I am not going to screenshot it as it’s super long and would be ridiculous to post. But anyone whose manually ran netstat will know. It just documents it here. It will show UDP and ICMP information too, if used. So… you can see how useful this tool can be for collecting data and how easy it is to run. There is plenty more to review in the tool but for now that’s all. If you find more interesting ways to use it or different commands to run with it, please share in the comments below.
Links for the Perfinsights so you don’t have to go back to the first part to get them:
Perfinsights Documents for Windows:
Download Perfinsights for Windows:
Perfinsights documents for Linux:
Download Perfinsights for Linux:
Note: Everything discussed today can be found on Microsoft’s TechNet website(s). The Tool is primarily designed for Azure VMs and may not work for all VM instances. I do not claim to have expert level knowledge of the tool and not responsible the tool’s outcome of any machines. Use at your own risk… *scary ghost sounds* ... Yes, it is the same note from part 1. I left it because I am lazy.