Increasingly, we're taking advantage of a package of scripts to capture and format system information for performance analysis. This package is a derivative of an automated performance infrastructure used inside of IBM for performance testing, analysis, and controls - so this quite literally is an example of sharing what we're using everyday.
The "lpcpu" package - available on this page - provides for an easy script to run which gathers a lot of the information generally needed to understand, debug, and analyze performance problems. The script runs on both x86 and on Power systems. Additionally, post-processing and formatting of the results is available from an x86 based Linux system (the graphing routines depend on an x86 charting library).
In this message board thread, we'll post the updates made to the package, hints and tips, and news. I would encourage you to click "notify me" on this message thread to automatically get the updates.