Configure → PCP Data collection

After the PCP software has been installed on each compute node it should be configured so that data are collected:

  • At the start of every job
  • 10, 20 and 30 seconds after job start
  • Periodically during the job (recommended 30 seconds)
  • At the end of every job

The archive data for each node are stored on a shared filesystem for subsequent processing by the job summarization software.


The PCP collection software should have been installed on the compute nodes.

Configuration Templates

The Job Summarization software includes template files that can be used to configure PCP collection on the compute nodes. The package itself should not be installed on the compute nodes, however you may wish to install it on a test node in order to obtain the PCP configuration file templates. Alternatively, the scripts may be extracted directly from the source tarball.

These templates are available:


  • Moved to: /etc/pcp/pmlogger
    • Remove any existing files under: /etc/pcp/pmlogger/control.d
    • Edit the file to specify the path to the shared filesystem. The log files must be accessible by the node that has the Job Summarization software installed
    • “PCP_LOG_DIR/pmlogger/LOCALHOSTNAME/$(date +%Y)/$(date +%m)/$(date +%d)”
      • Changed to something like: “//supremm/pmlogger/LOCALHOSTNAME/$(date +%Y)/$(date +%m)/$(date +%d)"
      • Where “LOCALHOSTNAME” is that exact literal string


  • Moved to /etc/pcp/pmlogger
  • Can be updated to change metrics logged or frequency
    • You may wish to reduce logging frequency from the default 30 seconds until confirming impact on your system and storage utilization


This script will run data collection at job start time and three additional samples at ten second intervals. This script should be merged into your existing prologue script. This script is designed for and tested with the Slurm resource manager.


This script will run data collection at job end. This script should be merged into your existing epilogue script. This script is designed for and tested with the Slurm resource manager.


  • Moved to /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/proc

This configuration file sets the parameters for process logging into the pcp archives. It prevents the logging of system processes, unless they consume significant resources. This will reduce disk usage by the pcp archives.

Enable logging modules (PMDAs)

  • By default, in order to be lightweight, PCP does not enable all logging modules (PMDAs)
  • They may be enabled by creating a “.NeedInstall” file which instructs the PCP framework to enable the PMDA on next restart.
$ touch /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/slurm/.NeedInstall
$ touch /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/nvidia/.NeedInstall
$ touch /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/gpfs/.NeedInstall
$ touch /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/nfsclient/.NeedInstall
$ touch /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/perfevent/.NeedInstall
$ touch /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/mic/.NeedInstall
$ touch /var/lib/pcp/pmdas/libvirt/.NeedInstall

Configure Global Process Capture

By default, PCP does not allow the capture of process information for all users. XDMoD can display process information only if the pcp user is permitted to log this information from each compute host. See the relevant documentation in man pmdaproc. To enable this, you must add the -A flag to the pmdaproc line in /etc/pcp/pmcd/pmcd.conf like so:

proc	3	pipe	binary 		/var/lib/pcp/pmdas/proc/pmdaproc  -A

Disable daily archive rollup

The daily housekeeping processes that run from cron for PCP will attempt to do some cleanup that is not necessary when ingesting the PCP archives into XDMoD. You should add the -M flag to pmlogger_daily line in the /etc/cron.d/pcp-pmlogger file. This will disable the process that runs daily to combine multiple archives into one file. XDMoD can handle these files with no problem, and this process uses unnecessary resources. You may also wish to adjust the retention period for old archives with the -k parameter. See man pmlogger_daily for more information. The following line will disable the daily rollup and keep archives forever.

10     0  *  *  *  pcp  /usr/libexec/pcp/bin/pmlogger_daily -M -k forever

Adjust the retention policy to suit your needs of reprocessing old data.

Restart PMCD

After making configuration changes to the PMDAs, you will need to restart the pmcd service. On a systemd enabled system, this can be done with:

$ systemctl restart pmcd