Posts Tagged ‘PAL’

PAL (Performance Analysis of Logs) Issues

May 18, 2012 Leave a comment

Created few issues on for the new functionality added in version 2.2.  Where you can enter in SQL Server Instance name in a dialog box so it produces a counter list with instance name instead of only default.  Please vote, to get it fixed (not critical issues however).

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Creating a Simple Counter List in PAL (Performance Analysis of Logs)

May 17, 2012 Leave a comment

In my previous post, I talked about how implement the counters in Windows 2003.  However I went about getting the list of counters from PAL the long way.  Kind of feel a bit stupid about this now, but Clint (PAL Creator), pointed out we can do this directly in the tool.  I had looked around for it in few locations, expect the obvious.

  1. Open PAL.
  2. Go to Threshold File.
  3. Click Export to Perfmon Template File.
  4. Click OK in SQL Instance Dialog Box.
  5. Change the Save as Type to “Logman Files (*.txt)”.
    No more manual hacking and slashing.  (Thanks Clint).


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How to implement PAL (Performance Analyis of Log) counters in Windows 2003?

April 1, 2012 3 comments

PAL designed by Clint Huffman, available on  This tool analyzes the performance counters logs for you to identify if anything is outside a threshold.  These thresholds are predefined in the program, thus you don’t have to remember stuff like minimum “Page Life Expectancy” suppose to be 300 (all though you really should remember at least that one :P).  But it has many-many good counters to look at for system and SQL Server.  So instead of me providing a list of all the counters you can look at there is functionality in PAL to export an XML file from which you can create Windows 2008 based Perfmon capture (will blog about it another time).  But what I want to do is use the same counters on Windows 2003, however the 2003 version does not support XML so we have to use command line tool called logman.exe.

PAL Wizard - Threshold File

1. Start PAL.
2. Go to Threshold File.
3. Click on Threshold file Drop Down select “Microsoft SQL Server 2005/2008”.
4. Click Export to Perfmon Template File.

PAL - Instance Name Dialog Box

5. It’ll ask for Instance name, click OK (assuming we are running it on Default instance).
6. Close PAL.
7. Open the XML file in Notepad.

Modifying XML Data File

SQLCounters.XML File XML To Delete @ TOP

PAL Updating XML File

SQLCounters.XML File XML To Delete @ BOTTOM

8. Delete the Highlighted Part at the Top of the XML file and at the Bottom of the XML file.
9. Search for and replace ”    ” with (nothing).
10. Search for and replace “” with (nothing).

Clean Counter List

11. So you are left with the above image.

Save Dialog Box
12. Now Save file as SQLCounters.txt and make sure the to change encoding to ANSI (Windows 2003 command doesn’t like unicode).
13. Run following command from Command Prompt.

logman create counter SQLPerfCollection –cf “C:\Temp\counters.txt” -si 00:10

14. You should see a collection in perfmon called SQLPerfCollections now.

Credit for this goes to a colleague of mine, Microsoft Platforms PFE (Thanks!!).

Categories: Performance Tuning, Tools Tags: , ,
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