Gprof is a performance analysis tool for Unix applications. It used a hybrid of instrumentation Another implementation was written as part of the GNU project for GNU GPROF output consists of two parts: the flat profile and the call graph. Gprof is a profiling program which collects and arranges statistics on your lly, it looks Write hate-mail to gnu (but don’t tell them I told you to). If you are a programmer, who writes code in C, Pascal, or Fortran77 programming language and uses Linux as the development platform, youll be glad to.

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Here’s the flat profile in my case:. While running the instrumented executable, profiling data is silently written to a file ‘gmon.

So, what exactly is Gprof? The source file ‘collatz. Sampling data is saved in ‘gmon.

It can be analyzed with gprof by giving the name of the executable as an argument:. The flat profile gives the total execution time spent in each function and its percentage of the total running time.

The GNU profiler gprof is a useful tool for measuring the performance of a program–it records the number of calls to each function and the amount of time spent there, on a per-function basis.

The other columns in the output provide information on the total number of function calls made, and the time spent in each function. The second part of the output is the textual call graph, tge shows for each function who called it parent and who it called child subroutines. Not to be confused with the perfect hash function generator gperf. There’s no doubt that testing is an integral and one of the most important aspects of the software development process.

To use profiling, the program must be compiled and linked with the -pg profiling option:. GPROF output consists of two parts: In some versions, such as BSD, profiling of shared libraries can be limited because of restrictions of the profil function, which may be implemented as library function or as system call. Gough, foreword by Richard M. So, now use the Gprof tool in the following way:. There is an external tool called gprof2dot capable tbe converting the call graph from gprof into graphical form.


If all this sounds a bit confusing at this point especially the part in quotesdon’t worry, as we’ll fhe things clear through an example.

A call to the monitor function ‘mcount’ is inserted before each function call. It used a hybrid of instrumentation and sampling [1] and was created as an extended version of the older “prof” tool.

Efforts to speed up a program should concentrate first on those functions which dominate the total run-time. Sampling is done by probing the target program’s program counter at regular intervals using operating system interrupts programmed via profil 2 or setitimer 2 syscalls.

Else you can install it using the following command:.

Forgetting to link with the option -pg is a common error, which prevents profiling from recording any useful information. Functions which consume a large fraction of the run-time can be identified easily from the output of gprof. But since we’ve to profile the code using Gprof, I’ll have to use the -pg command line option provided by the gcc compiler. Function call counts are also reported.

First check whether or not the tool is already installed on your system.

How to install and use profiling tool Gprof on Linux

So, if through performance testing, we can enhance the performance of these functions in code, the overall performance of the software becomes better. Armed with this information, now you’ll be in a better position to understand the data present in your profiling output file profile-data.

Before we move ahead, please note that all the examples and instructions mentioned in this tutorial have been tested on Ubuntu What Gprof basically does is, it calculates the amount of time spent in each routine or function.

The next step is to launch that executable. Kessler, and Marshall K. This page was last edited on 21 Decemberat Here’s how I launched the binary in my case: However, whatever we’ve covered here should be enough to get you started. And by testing, we don’t mean just testing the code for bugs – of course, bug detection is important as nobody would want their software to be buggy – performance of the code also equally matters these days.


We will use gprof to examine the performance of a small numerical program which computes the lengths of sequences occurring in the unsolved Collatz conjecture in mathematics. There were analogous utility in glibc called ‘sprof’ to profile dynamic libraries.

How to install and use profiling tool Gprof on Linux

Log in or Sign up. Consequently efforts to decrease the run-time of the program should concentrate on the former. Here’s what the man page of Gprof says about information under these gnj sections:.

Mutual recursion and non-trivial cycles are not resolvable by the gprof approach context-insensitive call graphbecause it only records arc traversal, not full call chains. Additional output breaking down the run-time further is also produced by gprof but not shown here.

A Selection, Kathryn S.

Gprof – Wikipedia

If broken down to the last bit, performance testing effectively tests how much time a particular piece of code – say a function – is consuming. Gprof is a performance analysis tool for Unix applications. Yes, my password is: Webarchive template wayback links. Needless to say, the best way to understand a tool like Gprof is through a practical example.

In case you already use Gprof, and want to share something related to the tool with everyone here, just drop in a comment below. Once the command is executed, you’ll see that a file named gmon. Note that ideally I would have compiled the above code using the following command:. The resulting data is not exact, rather a statistical approximation.