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VMWare, esxtop and host CPU utilization

Posted on 2012-03-17
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
I can bring my VM up to about 35 percent CPU in the OS, and 60 percent in the VM, as reported by the GUI

I want to see what the Host is doing in CPU

When I go to esxtop, it says that 'system' and 'helper' are at zero percent idle

When I am running something or not

How do I determine what the host CPU from esxtop ?

I thought I would judge this from 'system' and 'helper'
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Question by:Los Angeles1
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Expert Comment

by:Aaron Tomosky
ID: 37733961
How many cores does the CPU have? How many vcpu did you assign the guest?
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LVL 117
ID: 37734543
Don't forget CPU Usage is always available from the vSphere Client and Performance Monitor Graphs.

esxtop
CPU

CPU load average of 1.00 means full utilisation of all CPU’s. A load of 2.00 means the host is using twice as many physical CPU’s as are currently available, likewise 0.50 means half are being utilised.

CPU Screen

PCPU USED(%) – Physical hardware execution context. Can be a physical CPU core if hyperthreading is unavilable or disabled or a logical CPU (LCPU) or SMT thread if hyperthreading is enabled. This displays PCPU percentage of CPU usage when averaged over all PCPUs.

PCPU UTIL(%) - Physical CPU utilised. (real time) Indicates how much time the PCPU was busy, in an unhalted state, in the last snapshot duration. Might differ from PCPU USED(%) due to power management technologies or hyperthreading.

If hyper threading is enabled these figures can be different, likewise if the frequency of the PCPU is changed due to power management these figures can also be adjusted.

As an example if PCPU USED(%) is 100 and PCPU UTIL(%) is 50 this is because hyper threading is splitting the load across the two PCPUs. If you then look in the vSphere client you may notice that CPU usage is 100%. This is because the vSphere client will double the statistics if hyperthreading is enabled.

In a dual core system, each PCPU is charged by the CPU scheduler half of the elapsed time when both PCPUs are busy.
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Author Comment

by:Los Angeles1
ID: 37735463
k, I think I understand what you are saying, but how do I determine the CPU utilization used by the actual hypervisor, or is that a concept that is used by VMWare
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LVL 117
ID: 37735534
your question states CPU utilization of the host? the host runs the hypervisor, the Host OS.
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Author Comment

by:Los Angeles1
ID: 37735574
In the example you showed, you discuss the CPU load average (util of all CPU),  PCPUUSED and PCUUTIL.

Still do not understand which of these numbers  are showing the utilization of the hypervisor

In the example you displayed above, what is the utilization of the CPU's used by the hypervisor ?  (ie, what number)
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LVL 117
ID: 37735592
CPU

load average of 1.00 means 100% of ALL CPUs in the host.

0.5 is 50%

2.00 is x2 as many physical CPUs as available.

load average is 0.1 so 10%
0
 

Author Comment

by:Los Angeles1
ID: 37735622
1> So if I understand you correctly, the hypervisor util is ten percent ?

2> Can I assume from the example above that the hypervisor is running on 3 virtual CPUs

Thanks
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LVL 117
ID: 37735626
1. correct

2. 2 VMs are using 3 vCPUs
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Author Comment

by:Los Angeles1
ID: 37735717
So in the example below


11:10:57pm up 6 days  4:15, 323 worlds, 1 VMs, 8 vCPUs; CPU load average: 0.35, 0.07, 0.03

Open in new window


1> What is the hyperthreading CPU

2> what is the .35 number

3>  What is the .07 number

4>  What is the .03 number ?

Thanks
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LVL 117

Accepted Solution

by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 500 total points
ID: 37735727
Average load values over time.

The arithmetic mean of CPU loads in 1 minute, 5 minutes, and 15 minutes, based on 6-second samples.
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LVL 117
ID: 37735734
I believe your original question has been answered. If this answer has been helpful please assign points. If you have any further questions about esxtop, please post another question and myself or other Experts will be happy to assit.
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