Best approach to checking the data from Graphs - CPU %?

I run a pretty fast (barebones) forum and I hover around only 2-6% CPU. But I spike very hard up to 12% (number is small but considering the normal, it’s double to 6x more CPU usage) and I was wondering what tool or the best approach to seeing what was going on at that time?

I have a relative timestamp via that handy graph but beyond that I don’t know how to capture what was going on at that moment. I’m also using serverpilot…should I ask them as well?

Only been with DO barely a week and since I have serverpilot ingrained into the website/droplet I’m usually at a loss to where to post lmao. I’m still trying to seperate the two services in my mind.

Hope to hear from you!


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The cheap and quick way to see cpu hogs is to use the command top at a terminal. You can also batch the output to a file (using the -b option), but be sure to use a time limit (the -n option) with a reasonable sampling period (-d option) because the file can grow large if your duration of interest happens to be long. Example command to run top for 24 hours at 15 second intervals:

top -b -d 15 -n 5760 > /tmp/top.out
#after it's done
grep -n "load average" /tmp/top.out | more

That’s 24 hours * 60 min/hour * 4 samples/min. The line numbers from the grep output on the left column corresponds to the line number in the file, which you can use to match the times when your load average reaches high levels.

Good hunting.

I could really use some help understanding it but I found some culprits. I had noticed sometimes on my graphs it would spike to 70% or even 90%.

This is what comes up for the high CPU hogs (I added in the “user…” line and the acct in brackets): user cpu mem time app [root] 95.4 21.0 0:21.97 update-apt-+ [root] 50.8 11.8 0:07.63 update-apt-+ [root] 65.7 7.9 0:09.89 unattended-+

^ Come to think of it, that’s probably serverpilot doing it’s thing huh…

@gndo do you have any preferences for terminals? I used putty way back in the day and was wondering if people use anything else lol.

I found this, “sp-agent” running on linux as a top (only .2% cpu lol)

What’s it for?


As an aside, could the 2-6% be normal operating procedures and the jump to 12% be my own self visiting my website and thus utilizing all the services/features? Lol. Mindgasm ;)