Hardware Monitoring with WMI

Overview of WMI

Windows Interface Screenshot
WMI RAM usage monitor

WMI, or Windows Management Instrumentation, has been added as Windows-specific implementation of Web-Base Enterprise Management (using, in turn, Common Information Model standards), providing tools to inquire and/or change certain system parameters. WMI uses SQl-like query language to retrieve or change data.

WMI uses so called WMI providers, components implementing new WMI queries, to expand applicability of the overall technique. Providers can be added to implement interacting with application-specific resources, and/or expand existing interfaces.

Although it’s not stated explicitly, WMI, since its introduction in NT 4.0, has become de facto standard for handling multiple maintenance/monitoring tasks in Windows systems. IPHost Network Monitor provides you with fully functional WMi monitors, offering certain presets to monitor common resources, as well as ability to execute arbitrary WMI query. Note that you can also run WMI scripts as an action in response to resources switching state, thus allowing to automate certain management tasks.

Base WMI monitors

Windows Interface Screenshot
WMI process count monitor

Measurement of CPU load, RAM usage, disk space (available or used), processes count are provided by corresponding WMI monitors. Since the above metrics define system state health, those monitors can be used as base ones, with other host monitors depending on them.

CPU load can be determined per single CPU core for every CPU installed. Fine-grained detalisation provides means to build detailed report, predict possible CPU power outages due to high load generated (that generally affects all the applications running). Similarly, long-term low CPU load may indicate the system can be used for more CPU-consuming tasks.

Process count can help to detect failed or unexpectedly stopped processes and services. As one of possible WMI monitors usage, IPHost Network Monitor can run scripts or programs in response to monitor switching state; thus, if a service is stopped, attempt to re-start it can be done, as part of alert/actions sequence.

Windows Interface Screenshot
WMI disk space monitor

Disk space is crucial monitor for processes that constantly consume disk space: logging events, running database backends or file servers. Low disk space can disrupt normal functioning of many service types; again, running script or program in response to low disk condition can be used to reclaim disk space (in cases it can be automated).

Finally, RAM usage monitors helps to see whether operating memory is used optimally. Too frequent swapping, constant low free memory state indicate RAM is either insufficient, or memory usage requires tuning. In either case, you can see the trends and generate reports to see how the situation can develop.

Other monitoring techniques

Looking for a software to monitor hardware resources via SNMP and SSH? IPHost network Monitor offers SNMP (generally available for majority of network devices) and SSH (for Unix-like systems), as alternatives to WMI, to use in situations when Windows-specific technique is inefficient, missing required resources support or otherwise inapplicable.

Note that WMI monitors, although offering most standard hardware-related information out of box, can be somewhat more resource consuming if compared to SNMP or SSH monitors alternatives. Select proper monitor type depending on actual task specifics.

IPHost Network Monitor provides you with free 30-days trial, fully functional. Start monitoring your systems in a couple of minutes, avoid outages wherever possible.