Re: KPROBES: Instrumenting a function's call site
From: Avishay Traeger
Date: Wed Sep 26 2007 - 13:37:40 EST
On Wed, 2007-09-26 at 10:28 -0700, Keshavamurthy, Anil S wrote:
> On Wed, Sep 26, 2007 at 10:09:33AM +0530, Ananth N Mavinakayanahalli wrote:
> > On Tue, Sep 25, 2007 at 06:12:38PM -0400, Avishay Traeger wrote:
> > > Hello,
> > > I am trying to use kprobes to measure the latency of a function by
> > > instrumenting its call site. Basically, I find the call instruction,
> > > and insert a kprobe with a pre-handler and post-handler at that point.
> > > The pre-handler measures the latency (reads the TSC counter). The
> > > post-handler measures the latency again, and subtracts the value that
> > > was read in the pre-handler to compute the total latency of the called
> > > function.
> > This sounds ok...
> So what you are really measuring is the latency of just that single
> instruction where you have inserted the probe i.e. because your
> pre-handler is called just before the probed instruction is executed and
> your post-handler is called right after you probed instruction is single-stepped.
Exactly - I want to profile that single instance of the call.
> > > So to measure the latency of foo(), I basically want kprobes to do this:
> > > pre_handler();
> > > foo();
> When you insert a probe, you are inserting probe on an instruction boundary
> and not at function level.
> > > post_handler();
> Hence the above looks like
> Probed-instruction; // most likely the first instruction in the foo();
> > >
> > > The problem is that the latencies that I am getting are consistently low
> > > (~10,000 cycles). When I manually instrument the functions, the latency
> > > is about 20,000,000 cycles. Clearly something is not right here.
> As I mentioned above what you are seeing is the latency of just the
> probed instruction and hence it is very very low compared to
> the latency of the function foo().
> > You could try a a couple of approaches for starters.
> I agree with Ananth, you can try the below approaches
> for your measurements.
> > a. As you mention above, a kprobe on the function invocation and the
> > other on the instruction following the call; both need just pre_handlers.
> > b.
> > - Insert a kprobe and a kretprobe on foo()
> > - The kprobe needs to have only a pre_handler that'll measure the latency
> > - A similar handler for the kretprobe handler can measure the latency
> > again and their difference will give you foo()'s latency.
> > <b> though will require you to do some housekeeping in case foo() is
> > reentrant to track which return instance corresponds to which call.
> > Ananth
> > PS: There was a thought of providing a facility to run a handler at
> > function entry even when just a kretprobe is used. Maybe we need to
> > relook at that; it'd have been useful in this case.
Thanks for the clarifications!
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