Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Sometimes a virtual machine inside kvm/qemu is saturated (load too high). Even a login (ssh) takes several seconds.

But the host is still accessible. How can I investigate why the virtual machine is saturated?

I would like to use top/iotop from outside. I would like to kill just those processes inside the vm which make trouble.

share|improve this question

You cannot affect the VM directly from the host, however, commands like kvm_stat and top can provide a good view of what the VM is doing and where the bottleneck is. Under virsh (or in qemu-monitor) there are additional stats, like domblkstat for example

If your VM is so saturated you cannot access it's SSH console, you can try for a direct qemu console instead, using VNC/Spice or a serial console.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.