Server uptime statistics

Microsoft's UPTIME Resource Kit Utility, which can be found at

http://www.microsoft.com/ntserver/nts/downloads/management/uptime/default.asp,

allows you to capture critical data about your systems' availability and

downtime. By collecting this data into Microsoft Excel and building a

trend analysis, you will be able to better manage your infrastructure.

The uptime.exe utility has a few different command line options

available to you when you run it, but the most critical ones are "/s",

which allows you to display key system events and statistics and

"/heartbeat", which allows you to turn on/off the system's heartbeat.

If a system's heartbeat is off, or if you are not running Service Pack 4

or greater, UPTIME may report that the event logs do not contain

sufficient information to calculate system availability. This is because

UPTIME detects an abnormal shutdown (for instance a bluescreen or power

failure) but cannot determine how long the system was down during this

abnormal outage. Therefore, for accuracy of your data, it is recommended

that you enable the heartbeat feature on all of the servers that you

want to manage and report the uptime statistics for. However, before

doing so, please read these two articles so that you understand the

implications:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;232243

http://www.jsiinc.com/SUBC/tip1400/rh1425.htm

You can enable the heartbeat featured by typing the following command at

a command prompt:

uptime serverName /heartbeat

Anytime before or after you have enabled the heartbeat feature you can

view the vital availability statistics of your server by typing:

uptime serverName /s

See Figure 1 for a sample of what is displayed.

If you want, you can write a simple VBScript that will just gather the

data you need (i.e. System Availability, Total Uptime, etc) and export

it to a CSV file for importing into Excel. I will show you how to do

this in a future article.

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