28 October 2011

Everything You Need to Know About Windows Task Manager

We all probably use Windows Task Manger in our daily work with computer to get rid of Windows error. But what is the ability of Task Manager? Task Manager gives us very useful information about programs and processes running on the system and the resource consumed by these applications and processes. This tool often used for troubleshooting the system and allows us to stop the running programs. Today I’m going to introduce you the different parts of the Windows Task Manager.

Two methods are used to implement the task manager:
1. Right click on any empty part of the Task Bar and select Task Manager from the popup menu.
2.  Pressing Ctrl+Shift+Del or Ctrl+Shift+Esc (hold the Shift and Ctrl first, and then press Esc).

In all Windows versions should be at least three tabs from the Task Manager displayed. These are Applications, Processes and Performance.

Applications tab shows running program after logging to the Windows. In many situations in which your program is in trouble and is not capable to respond to your commands, this tab enables you to select the program and pressing End Task to stop it.

In the Processes tab you can see all the running processes with details about User, CPU and Memory consumption. It has the ability to show you other values that can be adjusted from the View menu. Maybe it happened for you that after installing a program or new drivers, noticed that the speed of the system has declined substantially. First thing should be done is to identify the problem, go to this section and ensure that no process other than the System Idle process is constantly higher than 80%. If you encounter a problem with a particular process, you must terminate it and make sure after the reboot the process is not re-run.

Performance tab shows the system changes in schematic form of resources such as CPU and Memory. For using the information provided in this tab, you need to know some definitions:

CPU Usage: Percentage of the Processor activity time (if it is remaining more than 80% of this value, indicates weak hardware or software problem and we need further research to discover the source of the problem). A high percentage means that the programs or processes that are running require a lot of CPU resources, which can slow your computer.

CPU Usage History: A graphical view of the Processor activity both at the moment and for the past few minutes. For more information about CPU utilization, at the bottom of the performance tab, click Resource Monitor.

PF Usage: Displays Page File usage and the amount of virtual memory to disk and if its amount is high, then it is better to give more space devoted to it. The paging file is space on your hard disk that Windows uses in addition to RAM.

PF Usage History: It is a graph that shows the changes in Page File consumption and many changes in this graph represent a weakness or problem in a part of system.

Commit Charge: Displays the amount of memory allocated to applications and operating system.

In Performance tab you can see three tables Physical Memory (MB), Kernel Memory (MB) and System.

Physical Memory (in MB): It is the amount of physical memory (RAM) installed on the system. Under this table you can find Total, Cached, Available and Free. Total is the amount of RAM installed on your computer (in megabytes). Cached refers to the amount of physical memory used recently for system resources. Available is the amount of memory that’s immediately available for use by processes, drivers or the operating system. Free is the amount of memory that is currently unused or doesn’t contain useful information (unlike cached files, which do contain useful information).

Kernel Memory: Shows the amount of memory allocated to the operating system kernel and drivers. Under Kernel Memory, Paged refers to the amount of virtual memory being used by the core part of Windows (called Kernel). Non-paged is the amount of RAM memory used by the Kernel.

The System table includes five fields:

·         Handles. Number of unique objects identifiers in use by processes. This value is mostly of interest to IT professionals and programmers.

·         Threads. Number of objects or processes running within larger processes or programs. This value is mostly of interest to IT professionals and programmers.

·         Processes. Number of individual processes running on the computer (you can also view this information on the Processes tab).

·         Up Time. Amount of time that has passed since the computer has been restarted.

·         Commit (MB). A description of virtual memory use (also known as paging file use). The paging file is space on your hard disk that Windows uses in addition to RAM. The first number is the amount of RAM and virtual memory currently in use, and the second number is the amount of RAM and virtual memory available on your computer.