sar2pcp(1) — Linux manual page


SAR2PCP(1)               General Commands Manual              SAR2PCP(1)

NAME         top

       sar2pcp - import sar data and create a PCP archive

SYNOPSIS         top

       sar2pcp infile outfile

DESCRIPTION         top

       sar2pcp is intended to read a binary System Activity Reporting
       (sar) data file as created by sadc(1) (infile) and translate this
       into a Performance Co-Pilot (PCP) archive with the basename

       However, if infile has the suffix ``.xml'', then it will be
       considered already in XML format and sar2pcp will operate
       directly on it.

       The resultant PCP achive may be used with all the PCP client
       tools to graph subsets of the data using pmchart(1), perform data
       reduction and reporting, filter with the PCP inference engine
       pmie(1), etc.

       A series of physical files will be created with the prefix
       outfile.  These are outfile.0 (the performance data),
       outfile.meta (the metadata that describes the performance data)
       and outfile.index (a temporal index to improve efficiency of
       replay operations for the archive).  If any of these files exists
       already, then sar2pcp will not overwrite them and will exit with
       an error message of the form

       _&__pmLogNewFile: ``blah.0'' already exists, not over-written

       sar2pcp is a Perl script that uses the PCP::LogImport Perl
       wrapper around the PCP libpcp_import library, and as such could
       be used as an example to develop new tools to import other types
       of performance data and create PCP archives.  A Python wrapper
       module is also available.

NOTES         top

       As of sysstat version 12.0.5, sadc(1) has added functionality to
       directly write PCP archive files.  To produce archive files from
       sar run:

       $ sadf -l -O pcparchive=ARCHIVE_NAME sar.dat -- -A

CAVEATS         top

       When not using the XML input option, sar2pcp requires infile to
       have been created by a version of sadc(1) from which includes the
       sadf(1) utility to translate infile into an XML stream (any since
       version 6); sar2pcp will automatically run sadf(1) and translate
       the resultant XML into a PCP archive.

       When using binary sadc files it is important to ensure the
       installed sadf is compatible with the version of sadc that
       originally generated the binary files.  Simply assuming a newer
       installed version will work is unfortunately far too optimistic,
       and nor should one assume that binary data from different
       platforms (e.g. different endianness) will work - these issues
       are due to limitations in sadc and sadf, and not in sar2pcp

       Fortunately, the sadf message indicating that an incompatibility
       has been detected is consistent across versions, and is always

       Invalid system activity file

       Using an XML infile has the advantage that the installed version
       of sadf is completely bypassed.  sar2pcp undertakes to transform
       any valid XML produced by any of the different variations of sadf
       into a valid PCP archive.  Any version of PCP will be able to
       interpret the archive files produced by any version of sar2pcp,
       and you are also free to move the binary PCP archive between
       different platforms, different hardware, even different operating
       systems - it Just Works (TM).


       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

       pmie(1), pmchart(1), pmlogger(1), pmlogextract(1),
       pmlogsummary(1), sadc(1), sadf(1), sar(1), Date::Parse(3pm),
       Date::Format(3pm), PCP::LogImport(3pm), XML::TokeParser(3pm) and

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 2024-06-14.
       (At that time, the date of the most recent commit that was found
       in the repository was 2024-06-14.)  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                        SAR2PCP(1)

Pages that refer to this page: pcpcompat(1)