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Message Posted: Mon, 17 Mar 2003 @ 16:18:40 GMT

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Subj:   Re: Canary queries and SQL for performance monitoring
From:   Meade, Cornelius

One way to approach what you seem to be asking is through the use of a canary query. This is a query (or maybe a couple of queries) which is somewhat representative of your typical business transaction and which you can execute repeatedly throughout the day. By measuring the response time for these executions at different times of the day and comparing them to norms for your environment (i.e. you also need to track the overall system workload during the day) which equate to system performance within the bounds you deem acceptable then you can probably extrapolate that future execution metrics collected for the canary query mean the system performance is within the bounds previously established. This is basically how I've used "canary queries" in the past to establish a dashboard for system performance. Ideally, you want your canary query to be submitted and executed in as close to the same manner as all other business transactions are submitted but often this is where some tradeoffs have to be made. Mind you, this type of thing is not fool proof and can be labor intensive to maintain its validity as a metric but this can work reasonably well.

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