Measuring Java execution time, memory usage and cpu load for a code segment

For a particular segment of Java code, I'd like to measure:

  • execution time (most likely thread execution time)
  • memory usage
  • CPU load (specifically attributable to the code segment)

I'm a relative Java novice and am not familiar with how this might be achieved. I've been referred to JMX, however I'm not sure how that might be used, and JMX looks a bit 'heavy' for what I'm looking to do.

Ideally I'd like some measurement class that can be told what I would like to measure, with the option of calling a start() method prior to a code segment and a stop() method after. Relevant metrics would be logged to a file I specify.

For example:

import com.example.metricLogger;

metricLogger logger = new metricLogger();



/* Code to be measured */


Is there any standard/common/conventional way of achieving this in Java?

Such measurements are for one-off performance comparisons and so I'm not looking for any in-production long-term monitoring processes.

I'm more than happy to be referred to tutorials or external examples and don't expect a full answer here. That said, if anything as simple as the above can be achieved a realistic example would go down really well.


Profiling may be an easier option since you don't require in-production stats. Profiling also doesn't require code modification. VisualVM (which ships w/ the JDK 1.6.06+) is a simple tool. If you want something more in-depth I'd go with Eclipse TPTP, Netbeans profiler, or JProfiler(pay).

If you want to write you own, consider the following:

Simple measurments like execution time can be done by "clocking" the section you're interested in:

long start = System.nanoTime(); // requires java 1.5
// Segment to monitor
double elapsedTimeInSec = (System.nanoTime() - start) * 1.0e-9;

You can use a similar technique to monitor memory via Runtime.getRuntime().*memory() methods. Keep in mind that tracking memory usage in a garbage collected environment is trickier than simple subtraction.

CPU load is hard to measure in Java, I typically stick with execution time and optimize the longer / repetitive sections

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