Ryan Haveson, a group program manager on Microsoft's User Experience team, provided an update on new Task Manager
of Windows 8, which includes tools for managing systems with a large number of logical processors, typically found in servers and data centers.
The task manager of Windows 7 systems with many processors was not providing easy- -to-read, real-time comparisons. In 64+ logical processor range, the graphs were getting pretty small. In addition, if any anomalous graph was identified, there was no easy way to get the corresponding processor ID.
In the screen shots below, taken from a current build of Windows 8,
it is now easy to see all the logical processors at a glance and know
which are being utilized to high and low capacity.
New Task Manager showing 160 logical processors
In the new CPU graph, you can also get the logical processor ID that
maps to each entry via a tooltip, by hovering over the entry with the
Tooltip showing the logical processor ID
A benefit of a heat map is that it scales really well to large
data sets. The new Task Manager will show as many logical processors as
the OS supports (up to 640). To make sure you always see the
information at a meaningful size, when the data set gets too big for the
window, the heat map scales to best fit, and a scroll bar appears as
With 160 logical processors, the CPU graph scales using a scrollbar
For those of you who really like to (micro-) manage every last detail
of your system, you can even set which logical processor(s) each of
your processes can use. To do this, you first find the ID of the logical
core by hovering over one of the cells in the heat map, then go to the
Details tab, right-click the process you want, and click ?Set affinity.?
Set process affinity from the Details tab
Select the logical processors for the process
Of course, setting processor affinity is only for the super-technical
user who has a need or desire for that level of control?you can
severely affect your system?s power management and performance if you
don?t know what you are doing?so Microsoft made sure the OS would do a great
job taking care of this for you. It is hard to do better than the
sophisticated algorithms that Windows uses to automatically manage which
processes are allocated to each logical processor based on hardware
capability and topology.