Back to Basics Diagnostic Tasks Which Process is Consuming the Memory and CPU


One of the most common scenarios while monitoring the servers are monitoring  CPU and Memory.  We have default monitors in OS MP   which checks  the total processor utilization and Available MBs of memory.  These 2 are key  performance counters when we start troubleshooting any performance  related issue on servers.


On of the challenges about our monitors  is we get alerted when CPU or Memory under pressure  but in order to troubleshoot you need to know  which process is actually causing it . This key information is missing in our alerts.  Consider the situation where you  get those alerts when you are not at the office   , in this case you have no pointers from operations manager to diagnose the situation.


Diagnostic Tasks

In Operations Manager we  can attach a task to a monitor  to

  • gather more information  - Diagnostic Tasks
  • Take action to resolve the problem – Recovery Tasks

So all we need to attach a task to retrieve  top processes  when these monitors goes unhealthy.


Tracking High CPU Utilization

Here I have one server under load and both memory and processor monitors are in unhealthy state.




To find what is consuming  the CPU cycles we can run  List Top CPU Consuming processes  task from Windows Server Operating System state  view under Microsoft Windows Server



So all we need to do is attach this  task from Windows.Server>library.MP  to  Total CPU Utilization monitor as recovery task .

Here is the XML snippet does the action



Here is the Health Explorer after recovery is attached


Now you can go back and track which processes were  causing high processor utilization on your servers from State Changes in Health Explorer.

Tracking Memory Pressure

Same technique can be applied to track   memory pressure, only problem is we don’t have a built in task to achieve this.  So I have  modified the script which collects CPU cycles so it returns memory consumption for the  processes.



Now  whenever you have  a problem with CPU or Memory utilization you will be able to access the process causing the situation from health explorer.

Attached 3 MPs for Windows 2003 , 2008 & R2 , 2012&R2