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July 30, 2011 / kiranpatils

Basics of CounterDumpAgent


Our main job is to keep our Sitecore sites performance high! So, while doing this we come up with lots of WOW things which Sitecore provides. But there is no much document available OR so less guys wrote article which shares main purpose of it. Today, I’m going to share with you the new hidden gem of Sitecore and that’s CounterDumpAgent!

Let’s crack on!


What is CounterDumpAgent?

One of those features is the CounterDumpAgent. This agent dumps diagnostics data from Sitecore and can be used when debugging slow or faulty websites. You can see cache clear/hit/miss information, client data reads/writes, jobs in the pipeline, number of publishing, security and system data and much more.

[Source : Above definition describes everything!]

How to enable it?

As you know all Agent resides in Web.config — and same holds true with CounterDumpAgent as well.

<!-- Agent to dump performance counter data -->
<agent type="Sitecore.Tasks.CounterDumpAgent" method="Run" interval="00:05:00">

DumpFile indicates the location where your dump file will be created and string surrounded with {} will be replaced by date, time and ProcessID.
In simple language, configuration given above will generate counterdumpagent file under DATAFOLDER/diagnostics folder
on 5 Minutes interval! [Your Frequency setting matters!]

From where I can see CounterDumpAgent files?

You can see your log files under <DATAFOLDER>/diagnostics folder.

How to analyze CounterDumpAgent file(s)?

Format of CounteDumpAgent file is in XML, and brief of its schema is as under:

<category name='<Category of a counter>’>

if you are generating one file a day then it will be easy for you to check the XML file and see what’s going on! But in real world we configure CounterDumpAgent to run ideally on every 5 minute. [12 files for each hour and 288 files a day!] going through all files and analyzing the counters doesn’t sounds good — correct?

Same with me — So, was thinking to develop a nice tool using which I can analyze counter dump data easily. And Eureka! idea strikes in my mind — Converting CounterDumpAgent file to CSV. So, once it has been converted in CSV, I can open it in powerful tool named as EXCEL and do the things more faster!

CounterDumpToCSVConverter is an output of it!

Below chart, I’ve generated in ~1 minute!

Would like to use it? Application along with user manual can be downloaded from here

Happy CounterDump Analyzing! 🙂


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