Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Scanning the hard disk status

The hard disk performance effects how people perceive their Linux box. If you say a system is slow, what is causing this? There are many reasons, among them are;
too many programmes running, lower processing speed of hardware, insufficient resources, etc.

You can use basic linux tools to give readings on the hard disk for benchmark purpose. Here are among commands that anyone can use via a terminal;

  1. Get timing of cache and device reads on inactive systems. This means nothing else is running during the test.
    hdparm -tT /dev/sda
  2. Shows the files opened by processes.
    lsof
  3. Monitor balance between input/output load of physical disk using the sysstat package. iostat -x
  4. Space on mounted devices.
    df -h
  5. Monitor load on a Linux system, default every 10 second updated.
    atop

Details on how to use the above commands can be found in the respective man pages.

Now you can tell someone, my disk is faster than yours.

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