Saturday, June 13, 2009

New discussion group for PmcTools

The PmcTools project now has a new discussion group pmctools-discuss, hosted on

If you have a question on how to use PmcTools, or about its internals, please ask it there.

Monday, April 20, 2009

PmcTools talk at the Bangalore chapter of the ACM

In April 2009 I was invited to speak on FreeBSD/PmcTools by the Bangalore chapter of the ACM. The slides for this talk are available at: (550KB, PDF).

This was an overview talk. The talk briefly touched upon: the motivations and goals of the project, the programming APIs, some aspects of the implementation and on possible future work.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Short updates

A couple of (lagged!) updates on my FreeBSD/PmcTools work:

  • In Nov'08, I added support for Intel™ Core 2™ PMCs to PmcTools (SVN #185363 and later changesets).

    More recently, Nokia, via Jeff Roberson, contributed basic support for the PMCs in the Core/i7™ CPU, the next member in the Core™ family of CPUs (SVN #187761).

    With these additions PmcTools supports most Intel CPUs that have PMCs in them. (I have plans to finish support for 166Mhz Pentium MMX™ CPUs soon.)

  • A couple of tricky bugs were tracked down and fixed:

    • The NMI handler code I had written for the amd64 architecture needed to be more robust than it was. Fixed in SVN #188065.

    • A bug in callchain capture code that would appear only under high loads and only on SMP machines. Fixed in SVN #186037.

    Thanks to Artem Belevich, Fabien Thomas, George Neville-Neil and Jeff Roberson for their assistance with debugging.