1.3. Chapter Summary
Hunting a performance problem should be a satisfying and exciting process. If you have a good method in place to research and analyze, it will be repaid back many times as you hunt the problem. First, determine whether other people have had similar problems; if they have, try their solutions. Be skeptical of what they tell you, but look for others with experience of a similar problem. Create a reasonable metric and target for your performance hunt; the metric enables you to know when you have finished. Automate performance tests. Be sure to save test results and configuration information when you generate them so that you can review the results later. Keep your results organized and record any research and other information that you find that relates to your problem. Finally, periodically review your notes to find information that you might have missed the first time. If you follow these guidelines, you will have a clear goal and a clear procedure to investigate the problem.
This chapter provided a basic background for a performance investigation, and the following chapters cover the Linux-specific performance tools themselves. You learn how to use the tools, what type of information they can provide, and how to use them in combination to find performance problems on a particular system.