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Plan 9 - man page for vi (plan9 section 1)

VI(1)				     General Commands Manual				    VI(1)

       vi, ki, xi - instruction simulators

       vi [ textfile ]
       vi pid
       ki [ textfile ]
       ki pid
       xi [ textfile ]
       xi pid

       Vi  simulates  the  execution  of  a MIPS binary in a Plan 9 environment.  It has two main
       uses: as a debugger and as a statistics gatherer.  Programs running under vi execute about
       two hundred times slower than normal--but faster than single stepping under db.	Ki and xi
       are similar to vi but interpret SPARC and  ATT3210  binaries.   The  following  discussion
       refers to vi but applies to the others as well.

       Vi will simulate the execution of a named textfile.  It will also make a copy of an exist-
       ing process with process id pid and simulate its continuation.

       As a debugger vi offers more complete information than db(1).  Tracing can be performed at
       the  level  of instructions, system calls, or function calls.  Vi allows breakpoints to be
       triggered when specified addresses in  memory  are  accessed.   A  report  of  instruction
       counts,	load  delay  fills  and  distribution is produced for each run.  Vi simulates the
       CPU's caches and MMU to assist the optimization of compilers and programs.

       The command interface mirrors the interface to db; see db(1) for a  detailed  description.
       Data  formats and addressing are compatible with db except for disassembly: vi offers only
       MIPS (db -mmipsco) mnemonics for machine instructions.  Ki offers  both	Plan  9  and  Sun
       SPARC formats.

       Several extra commands allow extended tracing and printing of statistics:

	      The t command controls tracing. Zero cancels all tracing options.

	      i      Enable instruction tracing

	      c      Enable call tracing

	      s      Enable system call tracing

	      The i command prints statistics accumulated by all code run in this session.

	      i      Print instruction counts and frequency.

	      p      Print cycle profile.

	      t      (Vi only) Print TLB and cache statistics.

	      s      Print memory reference, working set and size statistics.

	      Vi  allows breakpoints to be set on any memory location.	These breakpoints monitor
	      when a location is accessed, read, written, or equals a certain value.  For  equal-
	      ity the compared value is the count (see db(1)) supplied to the command.

       /sys/src/cmd/vi etc.

       nm(1), db(1)

       The  code  generated by the compilers is well supported, but some unusual instructions are
       unimplemented.  Some Plan 9 system calls such as rfork cause simulated traps.  The  float-
       ing  point  simulation  makes  assumptions about the interpreting machine's floating point
       support. The floating point conversions performed by vi may cause a loss of precision.


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