Most Systems Administrators have used Performance Monitor to view real-time performance data on Windows servers and identify bottlenecks. Some may have also recorded sessions and later analyzed log files for performance issues. In fact, this is what I will be talking about in the couple of posts to come, mainly about Data Collector Sets. Data Collector sets gather system information, including configuration settings and performance data and store it in a data file. Before going to a brief explanation of how to create a Data Collector set, let's see some built-in features and basics:
AD Diagnostics set: this inbuilt Data Collector Set is only found in domain controllers and runs for 5 minutes. It logs data about the Kernel, Active Directory, AD registry configuration and performance counters.
LAN Diagnostics: this inbuilt Data Collector Set starts and stops manually and hence it runs until you stop it! It logs network performance counters, network configuration data and diagnostics tracing.
System Performance: this inbuilt Data Collector Set logs processor, disk memory, and network performance counters and kernel tracing. The System Performance counter stops automatically after one minute.
System Diagnostics: this inbuilt Data Collector Set logs detailed system information plus all the information included in the System Performance Data Collector Set. The System Diagnostics counter stops automatically after one minute.
Wireless Diagnostics: this inbuilt Data Collector Set is present only in computers with wireless capabilities and includes all the same information as the LAN Diagnostics set plus information relevant to troubleshooting wireless network connections. This set does not stop automatically and hence, you need to stop it.
To start a set, right click and then choose Start. If you are troubleshooting a problem, I suggest that you should try to replicate the problem if this is possible! You can view the results in the Reports node; however, right-clicking a Data Collector Set would give you the option to choose the Latest Report.