iCan Blog Archive

Some time ago, I wrote about the Navigator monitors that were added in the IBM i 7.2 release. The system monitor metrics are performance measurements of different aspects of overall system performance and the data for all these metrics comes from Collection Services. In that blog, I briefly mentioned some of the new monitor metrics that were added – temporary storage utilization, spooled file creation rate, shared processor pool utilization and others. This week I will expand a bit upon the new monitor metrics.

The new metrics added in 7.2 are:

  • CPU Utilization (SQL)
    The amount of unscaled system CPU consumed performing work done on behalf of SQL operations relative to the configured CPU time (processor units) available to the partition during the interval. There’s a post, Understand Scaled CPU Time, if you need to know more about unscaled and scaled CPU.
    Essentially, this metric allows you to determine how much of your CPU utilization is being used for SQL operations; if your CPU utilization is unexpectedly high, this can help you focus your investigation.
  • CPU Utilization (uncapped)
    The uncapped CPU percent unscaled. This is the amount of unscaled system CPU consumed relative to the maximum uncapped CPU that the partition could consume. This is based on the smaller of the virtual processors assigned to the partition and the capacity of the shared virtual pool.
  • Share processor pool utilization (physical)
    The amount of CPU consumed in the physical shared pool by all partitions using the pool relative to the CPU available within the pool.
  • Shared processor pool utilization (virtual)
    The amount of CPU consumed in the virtual shared pool by all partitions using the pool relative to the CPU available within the pool.
  • Temporary storage utilization
    This metric shows the total amount of temporary storage (megabytes) in use within the system. Both system and user temporary storage is tracked.
    Related to this new metric, a few weeks ago I wrote IBM i 7.2 Improved Temporary Storage Tracking (Part 4), which reviewed the metrics in Collection Services and the associated graphs in the Performance Data Investigator for viewing temporary storage allocation/deallocation.
  • Spooled file creation rate
    This is the number of spool files being created per second. This metric can be useful if you have a situation where a job gets in a loop, creating spooled files. You want to identify and stop such issues as quickly as possible.

The disk metrics disk arm utilization (average and maximum) and disk storage utilization (average and maximum) are no longer systemwide; rather, they are separated for system ASP, user ASP and independent ASPs.

Below is a screen capture of Disk Arm Utilization for System ASP. I was running a little test program to generate a spooled file every second or so, starting shortly after 3:00 p.m. and you can see the disk arm utilization rise while that test was running.

With any of the monitor metrics, it’s possible to enable thresholds and automated notification so you are alerted to significant changes in system behavior.

Another nice feature of Navigator system monitors is that they use the Performance Data Investigator to visualize the data. PDI has drill-down capabilities; you can start with the monitor graph and if you see patterns in the monitor metrics that make you want to dig a bit deeper, you can use PDI to seamlessly do that analysis. For example, from my disk arm utilization graph above, I have the following drill-down options available:

As you move to the 7.2 release, take the time to become familiar with the system monitors in Navigator and use the new metrics to expand your proactive management of your IBM i.

This blog post was edited to fix broken links on April 12, 2020.

This blog post was originally published on IBMSystemsMag.com and is reproduced here by permission of IBM Systems Media.