newhelp(1) — Linux manual page


NEWHELP(1)               General Commands Manual              NEWHELP(1)

NAME         top

       newhelp - generate a performance metrics help database

SYNOPSIS         top

       $PCP_BINADM_DIR/newhelp [-vV?]  [-n pmnsfile] [-o outputfile]
       [file ...]

DESCRIPTION         top

       newhelp generates the Performance Co-Pilot help text files used
       by Performance Metric Domain Agents (PMDAs).

       Normally newhelp operates on the default Performance Metrics Name
       Space (PMNS), however if the -n option is specified an
       alternative namespace is loaded from the file pmnsfile.

       When there is only one input file, the base name of the new
       database is derived from the name of the input file, otherwise
       the -o flag must be given to explicitly name the database.  If no
       input files are supplied, newhelp reads from the standard input
       stream, in which case the -o flag must be given.

       If the output file name is determined to be foo, newhelp will
       create foo.dir and foo.pag.

       The -V flag causes verbose messages to be printed while newhelp
       is parsing its input.

       The first line of each entry in a help source file consists of an
       ``@'' character beginning the line followed by a space and then
       the performance metric name and a one line description of the
       metric.  Following lines (up to the next line beginning with
       ``@'' or end of file) may contain a verbose help description.

            # This is an example of newhelp's input syntax
            @ kernel.all.cpu.idle CPU idle time
            A cumulative count of the number of milliseconds
            of CPU idle time, summed over all processors.

       Three-part numeric metric identifiers (PMIDs) may be used in
       place of metric names, e.g. 60.0.23 rather than
       kernel.all.cpu.idle in the example above.  Other than for dynamic
       metrics (where the existence of a metric is known to a PMDA, but
       not visible in the PMNS and hence has no name that could be known
       to newhelp) use of this syntactic variant is not encouraged.

       Lines beginning with ``#'' are ignored, as are blank lines in the
       file before the first ``@''.  The verbose help text is optional.

       As a special case, a ``metric'' name of the form NNN.MM (for
       numeric NNN and MM) is interpreted as an instance domain
       identification, and the text describes the instance domain.

OPTIONS         top

       The available command line options are:

       -o output, --output=outout
            Specify base name for output files.

       -n pmnsfile, --namespace=pmnsfile
            Load an alternative Performance Metrics Name Space (PMNS(5))
            from the file pmnsfile.

       -v version, --version=version
            Set output version.  This options is deprecated, the only
            supported value is 2.

       -V, --verbose
            Print verbose output.

       -?, --help
            Display usage message and exit.

FILES         top

            default PMNS specification files


       Environment variables with the prefix PCP_ are used to
       parameterize the file and directory names used by PCP.  On each
       installation, the file /etc/pcp.conf contains the local values
       for these variables.  The $PCP_CONF variable may be used to
       specify an alternative configuration file, as described in

       For environment variables affecting PCP tools, see

SEE ALSO         top

       chkhelp(1), PMAPI(3), pmLookupInDomText(3), pmLookupText(3),
       pcp.conf(5), pcp.env(5) and PMNS(5).

COLOPHON         top

       This page is part of the PCP (Performance Co-Pilot) project.
       Information about the project can be found at 
       ⟨⟩.  If you have a bug report for this manual
       page, send it to  This page was obtained from the
       project's upstream Git repository
       ⟨⟩ on 2023-12-22.
       (At that time, the date of the most recent commit that was found
       in the repository was 2023-12-16.)  If you discover any rendering
       problems in this HTML version of the page, or you believe there
       is a better or more up-to-date source for the page, or you have
       corrections or improvements to the information in this COLOPHON
       (which is not part of the original manual page), send a mail to

Performance Co-Pilot               PCP                        NEWHELP(1)

Pages that refer to this page: chkhelp(1)pmda(3)pmdahelp(3)pmdainit(3)pmdatext(3)pmlookupindomtext(3)pmlookuptext(3)