gprof - display call graph profile data
gprof [ options ] [ a.out [ gmon.out ... ] ]
gprof produces an execution profile of a C, Pascal, or Fortran77 program. The effect of
called routines is incorporated in the profile of each caller. The profile data is taken
from the call graph profile file (gmon.out by default), which is created by programs com-
piled with the -pg option of cc, pc, and f77. The symbol table in the named object file
(a.out by default) is read and correlated with the call graph profile file. If more than
one profile file is specified, the gprof output shows the sum of the profile information
in the given profile files.
First, a flat profile is given. This listing gives the total execution times and call
counts for each of the functions in the program, sorted by decreasing time.
Next, these times are propagated along the edges of the call graph. Cycles are discov-
ered, and calls into a cycle are made to share the time of the cycle. A second listing
shows the functions sorted according to the time they represent including the time of
their call graph descendents. Below each function entry is shown its (direct) call graph
children, and how their times are propagated to this function. A similar display above
the function shows how this function's time and the time of its descendents is propagated
to its (direct) call graph parents.
Cycles are also shown, with an entry for the cycle as a whole as well as a listing of the
members of the cycle and their contributions to the time and call counts of the cycle.
FAT FILE SUPPORT
gprof accepts a ``fat'' file for the a.out file, using the host architecture from the
file. (It is an error if the ``fat'' file does not contain the host architecture.)
The following options are available:
-a suppresses the displaying of statically declared functions. If this option is
given, all relevant information about the static function (such as time samples,
calls to other functions, calls from other functions) belongs to the function
loaded just before the static function in the a.out file.
-b suppresses the displaying of a description of each field in the profile.
-c the static call graph of the program is discovered by a heuristic which examines
the text space of the object file. Static-only parents or children are indicated
with call counts of 0. (The -c option is currently not supported.)
suppresses the displaying of the graph profile entry for routine name and all its
descendants (unless they have other ancestors that aren't suppressed). More than
one -e option may be given. Only one name may be given with each -e option.
suppresses the displaying of the graph profile entry for routine name (and its
descendants) as -e, above, and also excludes the time spent in name (and its
descendants) from the total and percentage time computations. (For example, -E
mcount and all of the other monitor(3) routines are excluded by default.)
displays the graph profile entry of only the specified routine name and its descen-
dants. More than one -f option may be given. Only one name may be given with each
displays the graph profile entry of only the routine name and its descendants (as
-f, above) and also uses only the times of the displayed routines in total time and
percentage computations. More than one -F option may be given. Only one name may
be given with each -F option. The -F option overrides the -E option.
-s a profile file gmon.sum is produced which represents the sum of the profile infor-
mation in all the specified profile files. This summary profile file may be given
to subsequent executions of gprof (probably also with a -s) to accumulate profile
data across several runs of an a.out file.
-S produces four order files suitable as input to ld(1): gmon.order is an ordering
based on a closest is best algorithm, callf.order is based on call frequency,
callo.order is based on call order and time.order is based on time. The order
files contain only those functions which were called or sampled (including sponta-
neous functions). For library functions to appear correctly in the order file, a
whatsloaded file produced by ld(1) should exist in the working directory. Filenames
in the order file will be missing for: files compiled without the -g option, assem-
bly files, and stripped executables. This option does not work with executables
that have already been scattered. The gmon.order file can take a long time to pro-
duce and can be suppressed with the -x option.
-z displays routines which have zero usage (as indicated by call counts and accumu-
lated time). This is useful in conjunction with the -c option for discovering
which routines were never called.
a.out the namelist and text space.
gmon.out dynamic call graph and profile.
gmon.sum summarized dynamic call graph and profile.
gmon.order ordering based on closest is best algorithm.
callf.order ordering based on call frequency.
callo.order ordering based on call order.
time.order ordering based on time.
monitor(3), profil(2), cc(1)
dyld(1) and the DYLD_IMAGE_SUFFIX environment variable
``gprof: A Call Graph Execution Profiler'', by Graham, S.L., Kessler, P.B., McKusick,
M.K.; Proceedings of the SIGPLAN '82 Symposium on Compiler Construction, SIGPLAN Notices,
Vol. 17, No. 6, pp. 120-126, June 1982.
Beware of quantization errors. The granularity of the sampling is shown, but remains sta-
tistical at best. We assume that the time for each execution of a function can be
expressed by the total time for the function divided by the number of times the function
is called. Thus the time propagated along the call graph arcs to parents of that function
is directly proportional to the number of times that arc is traversed.
Parents which are not themselves profiled will have the time of their profiled children
propagated to them, but they will appear to be spontaneously invoked in the call graph
listing, and will not have their time propagated further. Similarly, signal catchers,
even though profiled, will appear to be spontaneous (although for more obscure reasons).
Any profiled children of signal catchers should have their times propagated properly,
unless the signal catcher was invoked during the execution of the profiling routine, in
which case all is lost.
The profiled program must call exit(2) or return normally for the profiling information to
be saved in the gmon.out file.
Apple Computer, Inc. November 25, 2002 GPROF(1)