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pid provider exposed

March 1, 2005

In the kernel group, we occasionally give presentations on interesting work we’ve been doing. Last week, I gave a talk on the implementation the DTrace pid provider, and — in the spirit of community that the OpenSolaris project has engendered — I’m posting it on my blog:


click to go to the presentation

In this presentation I go into the many details of the general technique for arbitrary instruction instrumentation, the implementation on SPARC, x86 and amd64 as well as the many pitfalls, caveats, tricks, and solutions. While I wouldn’t say I go into excruciating details, it’s probably falls just short. If you’re interested at all in instrumentation or want to know more about the pid provider or are just a super nerd who enjoys reading about cool, low-level hackery, it’s probably worth a read.

I’ve tried to augment it with some helpful commentary, but if something’s confusing, vague or seems wrong, please let me know.


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4 Responses

  1. Great slides – I had no idea there was a statically defined userland tracing API… now you’ve got my mind working 🙂

  2. We have USDT there now in the initial release of S10, and we’re working on a bunch of cool additions to it which will make USDT much more powerful and userful.

  3. I am having a hard time finding an answer to my Dtrace question of whether Dtrace is capable of assisting me in debugging a servlet. I have read in the expert exchange that this was not possible due to the complexity of the JVM but I have read elsewhere that give hints that this is possible.

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