Server disk usage statistics

Software that will allow you to keep track of server disk involvement

Server disk usage statistics
Barrie Sosinsky

Measuring disk usage may be very helpful in understanding your server's performance. Third-party software packages can complement any statistical and management control capabilities your LAN network performance software has. For example, Storage Resource Management programs from such companies as Sun Microsystems, W. Quinn, Astrum Software, BMC, IBM, HP, Computer Associates, EMC, Compaq, Trellisoft, and others will measure the amount of disk storage space used by particular applications on your network. They also measure disk space allocated to users or cost centers, and look at the amount of activity in specific programs or files.

SRM software works by installing disk counters and monitoring disk usage. Among the things it can tell you are: the amount of disk being used, how much data is stored in each folder, how much data is stored by document class, how much each individual is using, and many more things besides. It is typical for the programs to generate large numbers of reports, and many of these packages use Web browsers as their clients, enabling an administrator to get the information from anywhere. In addition to general server usage, you will also find SRM packages available for certain enterprise applications like Exchange.

Storage resource information can help you do capacity planning, alert you when resources are used improperly, and even alert you when a virus starts to generate large numbers of files or consume disk resources. Since shared network storage is a primary networking resource, this information when properly analyzed helps you better deploy your server.

Many times network administrators couple SRM packages with quota management software. Quotas are the amount of disk a person's account is allows to consume on a disk before the server reports that their portion of the disk is full. The quota management utility in Windows 2000 lags behind what Unix offers you. Windows NT doesn't even offer you quota management at all. Many people supplement their quota management by installing third party quota management software like W. Quinn's Storage CeNTral for Windows.


Barrie Sosinsky (barries@killerapps.com)is president of consulting company Sosinsky and Associates (Medfield MA). He has written extensively on a variety of computer topics. His company specializes in custom software (database and Web related), training and technical documentation.

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Related Book

Server Management
Author : Gilbert Held
Publisher : CRC Press
Published : Mar 2000
Summary :
This single-volume desktop reference provides comprehensive information on all server issues--featuring contributions from experts in the field. Engineers for system vendors, systems integrators, major resellers, end-users, and representatives from Hewlett-Packard, Novell, IBM, Compaq, Microsoft, and NEC share their ideas and experience on such topics as client/server distributed processing; the advent of more powerful, sophisticated servers; server dependability; server performance; and more.


This was first published in August 2001

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