Processes are system services and programs that run in the background on your computer. Every time you start your Windows computer, dozens or even hundreds of different processes start up alongside it. These may be parts of the operating system, such as Explorer, or software in your printer that allows other programs to recognize it.
Knowing how to monitor the processes running on your computer can make it easier to troubleshoot issues like crashes and slow performance.
Why monitoring processes can be useful
Processes are an integral part of how Windows and other operating systems work. Each running process uses varying amounts of system resources. Too many running processes can lead to performance issues, as can poorly optimized or faulty processes.
Windows Task Manager is an easy way to view all processes running on your computer. It allows you to see the resources they are using in real time and can also be used to stop processes from running.
When troubleshooting a problem on your computer, checking your running processes is often the first step. Unfortunately, there are limitations with Task Manager. While a particular process may be causing the problem, it can be easy to miss it unless you’re in Task Manager at exactly the right time.
You can’t monitor processes over time, which can be useful if a problem is intermittent or happens randomly. This is where a utility such as Kiwi Application Monitor can help.
How to monitor processes with Kiwi Application Monitor
Kiwi Application Monitor is a handy tool for monitoring specific processes and applications. Although it has been around for several years now, Kiwi is still a good way to solve process problems. This is especially true if Task Manager doesn’t give you the information you need.
- Download the Kiwi Application Monitor.
- Open Kiwi Application Monitor and click on the Add a button.
- Click it Process explorer button near the top of the new window that opens.
- A list of running processes will then load, similar to Task Manager. Find the process you suspect is causing problems, select it and click the button Add a button.
- Enter a description of the process, or just its name, to make it easier to manage in the list of monitored processes. Then click To add.
- Repeat this for as many processes as you want to monitor, then close Process Explorer.
Added processes are now monitored. You can select any process in the list to view resource usage information.
The longer you monitor a process, the more information you will have about it. You can then compare stats such as current and average memory usage, as well as daily runtime.
How to configure actions and triggers in Kiwi Application Monitor
Kiwi not only allows you to monitor processes and applications, but can also automatically react to process behavior. Once you identify a malicious process, you can configure triggers to perform certain actions. These include alerts when the process starts or terminates, or closing the process when it exceeds predefined resource usage amounts.
- Select the process from the list for which you want to set a trigger and action, then click Edit.
- In the new pane that opens, you will see tabs for basic and advanced rules. Advanced rules are only available in the pro version of the software, but there are several useful actions in basic rules.
- Check a box next to an action, then change the settings if needed. For example, if you saw that a process normally has a memory load of 50MB, you can set a rule to close the process if it exceeds 60MB.
- When you have configured your rules for a process, click the Save button.
How to Monitor Applications with Kiwi Application Monitor
In addition to being able to monitor processes, Kiwi Application Monitor also allows you to monitor your installed applications. The configuration steps for application monitoring are similar to process monitoring, with a few differences.
- Open Kiwi and click on the Add a button. In the next pane, instead of opening the process explorer, click on the Browse button.
- Find and select the EXE file of the application you want to monitor.
- Click on Open then click To add. The app will be added to the watchlist, allowing you to see resource usage information about it.
Having unwanted apps on your computer is never a good idea. Check out our guide to uninstalling unnecessary Windows programs and apps to see if you can save space and improve performance.
How to Check Your Application’s Resource Usage History
Many statistics tools are not available in the free version of Kiwi, but you can see a comparison of the monitored processes. This can help detect processes that are using unusual amounts of system resources.
You can see this comparison by clicking on the Statistics tab > Compare. Click it Process runtime button to choose the type of comparison you want, then click Spectacle. The bar graph that appears shows the resource usage of all your monitored processes.
Windows process monitoring when troubleshooting
Being able to accurately monitor the processes running on your computer can make troubleshooting problems much easier. Task Manager is a good first step, but not if you need to monitor specific processes for a longer period. Kiwi Application Monitor is a useful application for longer process monitoring.