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.TH CPUPOWER\-MONITOR "1" "22/02/2011" "" "cpupower Manual"
cpupower\-monitor \- Report processor frequency and idle statistics
.ft B
.B cpupower monitor
.RB "\-l"
.B cpupower monitor
.RB [ "\-m <mon1>," [ "<mon2>,..." ] ]
.RB [ "\-i seconds" ]
.B cpupower monitor
.RB [ "\-m <mon1>," [ "<mon2>,..." ] ]
.RB command
\fBcpupower-monitor \fP reports processor topology, frequency and idle power
state statistics. Either \fBcommand\fP is forked and
statistics are printed upon its completion, or statistics are printed periodically.
\fBcpupower-monitor \fP implements independent processor sleep state and
frequency counters. Some are retrieved from kernel statistics, some are
directly reading out hardware registers. Use \-l to get an overview which are
supported on your system.
.SH Options
.RS 4
List available monitors on your system. Additional details about each monitor
are shown:
.RS 2
.IP \(bu
The name in quotation marks which can be passed to the \-m parameter.
.IP \(bu
The number of different counters the monitor supports in brackets.
.IP \(bu
The amount of time in seconds the counters might overflow, due to
implementation constraints.
.IP \(bu
The name and a description of each counter and its processor hierarchy level
coverage in square brackets:
.RS 4
.IP \(bu
[T] \-> Thread
.IP \(bu
[C] \-> Core
.IP \(bu
[P] \-> Processor Package (Socket)
.IP \(bu
[M] \-> Machine/Platform wide counter
\-m <mon1>,<mon2>,...
.RS 4
Only display specific monitors. Use the monitor string(s) provided by \-l option.
\-i seconds
.RS 4
Measure intervall.
.RS 4
Measure idle and frequency characteristics of an arbitrary command/workload.
The executable \fBcommand\fP is forked and upon its exit, statistics gathered since it was
forked are displayed.
.RS 4
Increase verbosity if the binary was compiled with the DEBUG option set.
.SS "Idle_Stats"
Shows statistics of the cpuidle kernel subsystem. Values are retrieved from
The kernel updates these values every time an idle state is entered or
left. Therefore there can be some inaccuracy when cores are in an idle
state for some time when the measure starts or ends. In worst case it can happen
that one core stayed in an idle state for the whole measure time and the idle
state usage time as exported by the kernel did not get updated. In this case
a state residency of 0 percent is shown while it was 100.
.SS "Mperf"
The name comes from the aperf/mperf (average and maximum) MSR registers used
which are available on recent X86 processors. It shows the average frequency
(including boost frequencies).
The fact that on all recent hardware the mperf timer stops ticking in any idle
state it is also used to show C0 (processor is active) and Cx (processor is in
any sleep state) times. These counters do not have the inaccuracy restrictions
the "Idle_Stats" counters may show.
May work poorly on Linux-2.6.20 through 2.6.29, as the \fBacpi-cpufreq \fP
kernel frequency driver periodically cleared aperf/mperf registers in those
.SS "Nehalem" "SandyBridge"
Intel Core and Package sleep state counters.
Threads (hyperthreaded cores) may not be able to enter deeper core states if
its sibling is utilized.
Deepest package sleep states may in reality show up as machine/platform wide
sleep states and can only be entered if all cores are idle. Look up Intel
manuals (some are provided in the References section) for further details.
.SS "Ontario" "Liano"
AMD laptop and desktop processor (family 12h and 14h) sleep state counters.
The registers are accessed via PCI and therefore can still be read out while
cores have been offlined.
There is one special counter: NBP1 (North Bridge P1).
This one always returns 0 or 1, depending on whether the North Bridge P1
power state got entered at least once during measure time.
Being able to enter NBP1 state also depends on graphics power management.
Therefore this counter can be used to verify whether the graphics' driver
power management is working as expected.
cpupower monitor -l" may show:
.RS 4
Monitor "Mperf" (3 states) \- Might overflow after 922000000 s
Monitor "Idle_Stats" (3 states) \- Might overflow after 4294967295 s
cpupower monitor \-m "Idle_Stats,Mperf" scp /tmp/test /nfs/tmp
Monitor the scp command, show both Mperf and Idle_Stats states counter
statistics, but in exchanged order.
Be careful that the typical command to fully utilize one CPU by doing:
cpupower monitor cat /dev/zero >/dev/null
Does not work as expected, because the measured output is redirected to
/dev/null. This could get workarounded by putting the line into an own, tiny
shell script. Hit CTRL\-c to terminate the command and get the measure output
"BIOS and Kernel Developer’s Guide (BKDG) for AMD Family 14h Processors"
"Intel® Turbo Boost Technology
in Intel® Core™ Microarchitecture (Nehalem) Based Processors"
"Intel® 64 and IA-32 Architectures Software Developer's Manual
Volume 3B: System Programming Guide"
powertop(8), msr(4), vmstat(8)
Written by Thomas Renninger <>
Nehalem, SandyBridge monitors and command passing
based on turbostat.8 from Len Brown <>