Join Martin Guidry for an in-depth discussion in this video Using Resource Monitor to diagnose performance bottlenecks, part of Windows 10 Administration.
- When troubleshooting performance issues in Windows 10, one of the first things we want to look at is the possibility of a hardware bottleneck, and these bottlenecks usually occur in one of four categories. Those categories are processor, disk, memory, and network. Microsoft provides a tool for us to quickly look at all four categories. It's called Resource Monitor, so from the start menu, I'll just type in Resource Monitor.
I'll click on that and open up the application. Gives me five tabs. The first tab is Overview, which gives me a summary of the CPU, disk, network, and memory utilization currently going on on my PC. Resource Monitor has been around for several generations of Windows now. Hasn't changed dramatically in Windows 10, but there are a few improvements. Most of the interfaces we see will give us a list of processes and to the right some graphs showing us how our resources are being used over time.
The processes have a check box next to them. We can check off a potential one. I'm going to go ahead and do that. Notice a few things happen when I check it. First of all, any process that's checked gets moved to the top of the list, so I clicked on System, and it immediately got moved to the top of the list. Also, my graphs immediately changed with the addition of an orange line, so whereas the green line represents the resource utilization of all processes combined, the orange line represents the resource utilization of only the checked process.
For my Disk graph, I can see that the green line and the orange line are almost the same, meaning that the process that's checked is almost exclusively responsible for the utilization of that resource. As we go across the tabs, the next one is CPU. This will show me my different processes and different counters related to them. The most common one we look at is average CPU. If we click on that, we can sort by that column.
Notice that in Windows 10 we see suspended processes in light blue. Previous versions of Resource Monitor did not show suspended processes. Windows 10 added them and added them in a different color. The next tab is Memory. We have several counters here that can be a bit confusing. Four different counters that measure the amount of memory being used by a process right now: Commit, Working Set, Shareable, and Private.
Commit is a measurement of the amount of virtual memory being used by a process. Working Set is the measure of physical memory being used by the process and in my opinion is the most important counter. Usually when I sort, I sort on Working Set because I'm most interested in which process is using the most physical memory. However, a very large value in virtual memory would also be interesting.
Sometimes you'll want to sort on Commit also. The next two, Shareable and Private, are added together to provide the number we get for Working Set, so you notice if we take the value in Shareable and add it to the value in Private, we get exactly the number in Working Set. Shareable is, as the name implies, memory that can be shared with other processes. When applications communicate with one another, they sometimes do so through shared memory.
Also, multiple applications may access the same device driver, and that would be another instance of shared memory. Private is the opposite. Private is memory that will not be shared with any other process, memory that is exclusive to a particular process. Next is Disk, and we see information about the Read, the Write, and the Total utilization. And then last is Network, where we see information about Send, Receive, and Total, all of these fairly useful.
So, again, when you're troubleshooting a performance problem in Windows 10, particularly if you think it is hardware related, you'll want to narrow that down to a particular category. It's very rare that all of our hardware becomes bogged down at once. It's usually one particular area of hardware that's become bogged down, and it's usually either CPU, disk, network, or memory, and Resource Monitor gives us some tools to analyze all four of those.
Martin first reviews the various editions of both the desktop and mobile versions of Windows 10. This section covers the special features included with the Enterprise edition, and the hardware requirements for some of the new Windows 10 features. Martin also explains installing and updating drivers and configuring and optimizing the OS, including system properties and power options. Then it's a deep dive into Group Policy, including working with local groups, configuring preferences, and troubleshooting Group Policy. Martin also looks at Windows security—authentication and encryption—as well as the boot process, and concludes the course with a brief look at virtualization, networking, and backup and recovery.
- Understanding the different versions of Windows 10
- Installing and updating drivers
- Administering multitasking
- Working with Windows Group Policy
- Adding domain users and accounts to a Windows 10 PC
- Administering BitLocker and EFS
- Understanding the boot process
- Installing Client Hyper-V for Windows virtualization
- Managing Windows Firewall
- Backing up and restoring Windows 10
- Troubleshooting Windows 10