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Performance Management


This course is 3 days. Customizing the topic list will affect the time requirement.


Performance management specialists who are or will be responsible for the tuning and capacity monitoring of one or more machines running Unix. The topics listed below are concepts that are translated into the appropriate subsystem for the client's choice of platform.

Course Contents

Performance management requires a background in overall system architecture. This course takes the approach of tackling each major system of the chosen Unix platform individually, pointing out how resources are allocated, consumed, released, and reused.

  1. System Overview

  2. Kernel Environment

  3. Virtual Memory Subsystem

  4. System Call Subsystem

  5. Process Scheduling

  6. Processes and Threads

  7. File Systems

  8. Interprocess Communication Overview

  9. Device I/O Subsystem

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Understand the operating system subsystems and their interactions

  2. Understand the basic performance trade-offs of resource allocation

  3. Describe how requests for CPU time, disk space, and memory are handled

  4. Understand the performance implications of the tunable parameters

  5. Use performance diagnostic tools to monitor and plan for future upgrades

Instructional Technique

Students are invited to bring their current ideas and questions to the classroom for discussion. Case studies, lecture, and group problem solving will be used (online labs are difficult in this environment, although demonstrations can be performed if appropriate equipment access is available).


Familiarity with Unix concepts such as the command line shell, pipes, I/O redirection, process ids, paging space, and so forth, would be very beneficial. All information required for a proper understanding of the course material will be provided; however, hands-on use of those techniques listed above will enhance the learning experience.


These are the major topics discussed within each part of the course. Some flexibility is assumed since not all Unix systems are identical in all respects.

A. Overview

B. AIX Kernel Environment

C. Virtual Memory Subsystem

D. System Call Subsystem

E. CPU Usage

F. File Systems

G. Disk Storage Facilities

H. Inter-process Communication

I. Network Performance (introductory topic)

J. Performance Summary