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I've got a situation where a windows server (Windows server 2003), that can only be accessed using remote desktop or citrix, appears to freeze temporarily.

What is the best way to monitor this system. Sending more data across the network link could be causing the freeze, so I don't want to have tools like process monitor running and causing network traffic.

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Do you have RAID controllers that cache on writes as well? Or does it only cache on reads? If the latter, it could be someone logging in that's causing the apparent freeze. – K. Brian Kelley May 8 '09 at 15:21
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Check event logs after a freeze. Look for any admonitory or errors in the logs. Performance monitor may also be able to help.

You can also setup some sort of monitoring or heartbeat process using third party tools.

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Thanks - event logs are empty. I'm interested in the heartbeat and monitoring tools. Any ideas on what they could be? – Nick R Apr 30 '09 at 19:19

There are several different tools to use in this situation....but the best for eyes on troubleshooting is Perfmon...then you just need to set up counters for disk/processor/ram/network and watch for unexplained spikes..This would best be done from the console, but can be done over RDP.

Start | Run | perfmon --- will fire up some basic counters.

As for long term monitoring I use two tools. and Microsoft System Center 2007.

The MSCOM2007 will give you the ability to monitor down to the gnats eyeball what is going with a machine. Spiceworks is higher level.

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