Check out the new USENIX Web site.

Home About USENIX Events Membership Publications Students
Abstract - Technical Program - OSDI 99

Fine-Grained Dynamic Instrumentation of Commodity Operating System Kernels

Ariel Tamches, Barton P. Miller
University of Wisconsin, Madison


We have developed a technology, fine-grained dynamic instrumentation of commodity kernels, which can splice (insert) dynamically generated code before almost any machine code instruction of a completely unmodified running commodity operating system kernel. This technology is well-suited to performance profiling, debugging, code coverage, security auditing, runtime code optimizations, and kernel extensions. We have designed and implemented a tool called KernInst that performs dynamic instrumentation on a stock production Solaris kernel running on an UltraSPARC. On top of KernInst, we have implemented a kernel performance profiling tool, and used it to understand kernel and application performance under a Web proxy server workload. We used this information to make two changes (one to the kernel, one to the proxy) that cumulatively reduce the percentage of elapsed time that the proxy spends opening disk cache files from 40% to 7%.
  • View the full text of this paper in HTML form and PDF form.

  • If you need the latest Adobe Acrobat Reader, you can download it from Adobe's site.

  • To become a USENIX Member, please see our Membership Information.

?Need help? Use our Contacts page.

Last changed: 27 Mar 2002 ml
Technical Program
Symposium Index