pmdumptext(1) — Linux manual page


PMDUMPTEXT(1)            General Commands Manual           PMDUMPTEXT(1)

NAME         top

       pmdumptext - dump performance metrics to an ASCII table

SYNOPSIS         top

       pmdumptext [-CFGHilmMNoruVXz?]  [-a archive] [-A align] [-c
       config] [-d delimiter] [-f format] [-h host] [-n pmnsfile] [-O
       offset] [-P precision] [-R lines] [-s sample] [-S starttime] [-t
       interval] [-T endtime] [-U string] [-w width] [-Z timezone]
       [metric ...]

DESCRIPTION         top

       pmdumptext outputs the values of performance metrics collected
       live or from a set of Performance Co-Pilot (PCP) archives.  By
       default, the metric values are displayed in tab separated
       columns, prefixed by a timestamp.

       Unless directed to another host by the -h option, or to one or
       more sets of archives by the -a option, or an explict host: or
       archive/ prefix in the metric (see below for more information),
       pmdumptext will contact the Performance Metrics Collector Daemon
       (PMCD) on the local host to obtain the required information.

       pmdumptext may be run in interactive mode with the -i option
       which displays the values in equal width columns.  Without this
       option, no attempt is made to line up any values allowing the
       output to be easily parsed by other applications.

       The format of the output can be further controlled by changing
       the precision of the values with -P, the width of the columns
       with -w, and the format of the values with the -G and -F options
       for the shortest of scientific or fixed digits, and a fixed width
       format, respectively.

       By default pmdumptext will scale metric values to ``canonical''
       units of bytes, seconds and counts.  The one exception is with
       the -r option where the values are not scaled.  The -u option
       reports the units of each metric.

       The metrics to be dumped can be listed on the command line, in a
       config file, or piped to pmdumptext on stdin.  A metric consists
       of an optional source (host or archive), the metric name, and an
       optional instance list immediately after the name.  A colon is
       used to separate a host name from the metric, and a forward slash
       (``/'') to separate an archive name from the metric.  Instances
       are enclosed in square brackets and a comma is used between each
       instance if more than one is stated.  For example, some legal
       metrics are:


       When a metric does not contain a host: or archive/ prefix, e.g.
       kernel.all.cpu.idle above, then the source of the metric is
       determined by the following rules:
       (a) PMCD on host from the -h option if any, else
       (b) the archive from the first -a option if any, else
       (c) the host from the first metric prior to this one with a host:
           prefix if any, else
       (d) the archive from the first metric prior to this one with an
           archive/ prefix if any, else
       (e) PMCD on the local host, which is equivalent to local::metric.

       The format of a metric is further described in PCPIntro(1) in the
       PERFORMANCE METRIC SPECIFICATIONS section.  A normalization value
       may optionally follow a metric name in a config file or on stdin.
       The metric value will be scaled by this value.  For example, if
       the file system ``/dev/root'' has a capacity of 1965437 bytes,
       then the percentage of the file system that is used could be
       dumped with this config:

               filesys.used[/dev/root] 19654.37

       A normalization value may not be used with metrics specified as
       command line arguments.

       A metric name is not required to be a leaf node in the
       Performance Metrics Name Space (PMNS), except when one or more
       instances are specified.  For example, to dump all file system
       metrics, only filesys is required to dump filesys.capacity,
       filesys.used, etc.

OPTIONS         top

       The command line options -A (or --align), -O (or --origin), -S
       (or --start) and -T (or --finish) control the alignment, offset,
       start and end time when visualizing metrics from archives.  These
       options are common to most Performance Co-Pilot tools and are
       fully described in PCPIntro(1).

       The other available options are:

       -a archive, --archive=archive
            Specifies the historical archive from which metrics can be
            obtained for a particular host.  archive is the full path to
            an individual archive file, or the name of a directory
            containing archives, or the basename of an archive - all
            previously created by pmlogger(1).  Multiple sets of
            archives (separated by commas or in different -a options)
            from different hosts may be given, but only one set of
            archives per host is permitted.  Any metrics that are not
            associated with a specific host or archive will use the
            first archive as their source.

       -c config, --config=config
            If no metrics are listed on the command line, a config file
            can be used to specify the metrics to be dumped.  Unlike the
            command line metrics, each metric may be followed by a
            normalization value.  Empty lines and lines that begin with
            ``#'' are ignored.

       -C, --check
            Exit before dumping any values, but after parsing the
            metrics.  Metrics, instances, normals and units are listed
            if -m, -l, -N and/or -u are specified.

       -d delimiter, --delimiter=delimiter
            Specify the delimiter that separates each column of output.
            The delimiter may only be a single character.

       -f format, --time-format=format
            Use the format string for formatting the timestamp with each
            set of values.  The syntax of this string is the same as
            that described in strftime(3).  An empty format string (eg.
            '') will remove the timestamps from the output.

       -F, --fixed
            Output the values in a fixed width format of 6 characters.
            Positive numbers are represented as dd.ddu and negative
            numbers as [-]d.ddu.  The postfix multiplier may have the
            values K(10^3), M(10^6), G(10^9) and T(10^12).  For example,
            4567 would be displayed as 4.57K, even if the units of the
            metric are bytes.

       -G, --scientific
            Output the values using the shortest of a scientific format
            or a decimal notation.

       -h host, --host=host
            Fetch performance metrics from pmcd(1) on host, rather than
            the default localhost.

       -H, --headers
            Show all headers before dumping any metric values.  This is
            equivalent to -lmNu.

       -i, --interactive
            Output the data in fixed width columns using fixed width
            values (see -F) so that it is human-readable.  This option
            may not be used with -P as fixed point values are not fixed
            width.  This option will also affect the output of -m and -u
            options as the metric, instance and unit names will be

       -l, --source
            Show the source of the metrics.  In interactive mode, the
            host of the metrics is shown.  In non-interactive mode, this
            option shows the source of the metrics with the metric name
            even if -m is not specified.

       -m, --metrics
            Output the metric names before the metric values.  The
            source and units of the metrics may also be dumped with the
            -l and -u options respectively.  If in interactive mode, the
            metrics names may be truncated, and the instance names,
            where relevant, are also truncated on the follow line.

       -M   Output the column number and complete metric names before
            dumping any values.  If the -l flag is also specified, the
            source of the metrics is also shown.

       -n pmnsfile, --namespace=pmnsfile
            Load an alternative local PMNS from the file pmnsfile.

       -o, --offset
            When a timestamp is being reported (ie. unless an empty
            format string is given with the -f option), the timestamp is
            prefixed with the offset in seconds from the start of the
            set of archives or the beginning of the execution of

       -N   Output the normalization factors before the metric values.

       -p precision, --precision=precision
            Set the precision of the values.  This option may not be
            used with -F as the precision is constant.  The default
            precision is 3.

       -r, --raw
            Output the raw metric values, do not convert counters to
            rates and do not scale values to ``canonical'' units.  This
            option also causes pmdumptext to ignore the normalization
            values for each metric.

       -R lines, --repeat=lines
            Repeat the header every lines of output.  This option is
            useful in interactive mode when using a graphical window to
            avoid the header scrolling beyond the window's buffer, and
            to realign the header if the window is resized.

       -s samples, --samples=samples
            pmdumptext will terminate after this many samples.

       -t interval, --interval=interval
            The interval option follows the syntax described in
            PCPIntro(1), and in the simplest form may be an unsigned
            integer (the implied units in this case are seconds).  The
            default interval is 1 second.

       -u, --units
            Output the units of the metrics before the first values, but
            after the metric names if -m is also specified.

       -U string, --unavailable=string
            Change the output when values are unavailable to string.
            The default string is ``?''.

       -V, --version
            Display version number and exit.

       -w width, --widthfR=width
            Set the column width of the output.  Strings will be
            truncated to this width, and maybe postfixed by ``...'' if
            the width is greater than 5.

       -X, --extended
            Output the column number and complete metric names, one-per-
            line, both before dumping the first set of values and again
            each time the header is repeated.

       -z, --hostzone
            Use the local timezone of the host that is the source of the
            performance metrics, as identified by either the -h or the
            first -a options.  The default is to use the timezone of the
            local host.

       -Z timezone, --timezone=timezone
            Use timezone for the date and time.  Timezone is in the
            format of the environment variable TZ as described in

       -?, --help
            Display usage message and exit.


       pmdumptext supports the dumping of metrics from multiple hosts or
       set of archives.  The metrics listed on the command line or in
       the config file may have no specific source or come from
       different sources.

       However, restrictions apply when archives are specified on the
       command line (-a) and/or in the configuration file.  Firstly,
       there may be only one set of archives for any one host.
       Secondly, the hosts of any metrics with host sources must
       correspond to the host of a set of archives, either on the
       command line or previously as the source of another metric.

       The options -a and -h may not be used together.


       All metrics that have the semantics of counters are automatically
       converted to rates over the sample time interval.  In interactive
       mode, pmdumptext will also change the units of some metrics so
       that they are easier to comprehend:

       o      All metrics with space units (bytes to terabytes) are
              scaled to bytes.  Note that 1024 bytes with be represented
              as 1.02K, not 1.00K.

       o      Metrics that are counters with time units (nanoseconds to
              hours) represent time utilization over the sample
              interval.  The unit strings of such metrics is changed to
              ``Time Utilization'' or abbreviated to ``util'' and the
              values are normalized to the range zero to one.

EXAMPLES         top

       o To examine the load on two hosts foo and bar, simultaneously:

     $ pmdumptext -il 'foo:kernel.all.load[1]' 'bar:kernel.all.load[1]'
                  Source        foo     bar
     Wed Jul 30 11:37:53      0.309   0.409
     Wed Jul 30 11:37:54      0.309   0.409
     Wed Jul 30 11:37:55      0.309   0.409

       o To output the memory utilization on a remote host called bong
       with a simpler timestamp:

     $ pmdumptext -imu -h bong -f '%H:%M:%S' mem.util
       Metric        kernel  fs_ctl  _dirty  _clean    free    user
        Units             b       b       b       b       b       b
     09:32:28         8.98M   0.97M   0.00    3.90M   7.13M  46.13M
     09:32:29         8.99M   0.98M   0.00    5.71M   5.39M  46.03M
     09:32:30         8.99M   1.07M   0.00    5.81M   4.55M  46.69M
     09:32:31         9.03M   1.16M   0.00    6.45M   3.48M  47.00M
     09:32:32         9.09M   1.18M  20.48K   6.23M   3.29M  47.30M

       o To dump all metrics collected in an archive at a 30 second
       interval to a file for processing by another tool:

     $ pminfo -a archive | pmdumptext -t 30s -m -a archive > outfile

FILES         top

            default PMNS specification files


       Environment variables with the prefix PCP_ are used to
       parameterize the file and directory names used by PCP.  On each
       installation, the file /etc/pcp.conf contains the local values
       for these variables.  The $PCP_CONF variable may be used to
       specify an alternative configuration file, as described in

       For environment variables affecting PCP tools, see

SEE ALSO         top

       PCPIntro(1), pmcd(1), pmchart(1), pmlogger(1), pmrep(1),
       PMAPI(3), strftime(3) and environ(7).

COLOPHON         top

       This page is part of the PCP (Performance Co-Pilot) project.
       Information about the project can be found at 
       ⟨⟩.  If you have a bug report for this manual
       page, send it to  This page was obtained from the
       project's upstream Git repository
       ⟨⟩ on 2023-12-22.
       (At that time, the date of the most recent commit that was found
       in the repository was 2023-12-16.)  If you discover any rendering
       problems in this HTML version of the page, or you believe there
       is a better or more up-to-date source for the page, or you have
       corrections or improvements to the information in this COLOPHON
       (which is not part of the original manual page), send a mail to

Performance Co-Pilot               SGI                     PMDUMPTEXT(1)

Pages that refer to this page: pcpintro(1)pmchart(1)pmclient(1)pmlogsummary(1)pmrep(1)pmval(1)pmview(1)