Solaris Dynamic Tracing Guide

Naming pid Probes

The pid provider actually defines a class of providers. Each process can potentially have its own associated pid provider. A process with ID 123, for example, would be traced by using the pid123 provider. For probes from one of these providers, the module portion of the probe description refers to an object loaded in the corresponding process's address space. The following example uses mdb(1) to display a list of objects:

$ mdb -p 1234
Loading modules: [ ]
> ::objects
   10000    34000    24000 /usr/bin/csh
ff3c0000 ff3e8000    28000 /lib/
ff350000 ff37a000    2a000 /lib/
ff200000 ff2be000    be000 /lib/
ff3a0000 ff3a2000     2000 /lib/
ff320000 ff324000     4000 /platform/sun4u/lib/

In the probe description, you name the object by the name of the file, not its full path name. You can also omit the “.1” or “so.1” suffix. All of the following examples name the same probe:

The first example is the actual name of the probe. The other examples are convenient aliases that are replaced with the full load object name internally.

For the load object of the executable, you can use the alias a.out. The following two probe descriptions name the same probe:


As with all anchored DTrace probes, the function field of the probe description names a function in the module field. A user application binary might have several names for the same function. For example, mutex_lock might be an alternate name for the function pthread_mutex_lock in DTrace chooses one canonical name for such functions and uses that name internally. The following example shows how DTrace internally remaps module and function names to a canonical form:

# dtrace -q -n pid101267:libc:mutex_lock:entry'{ \
    printf("%s:%s:%s:%s\n", probeprov, probemod, probefunc, probename); }'

This automatic renaming means that the names of the probes you enable may be slightly different than those actually enabled. The canonical name will always be consistent between runs of DTrace on systems running the same Solaris release.

See Chapter 33, User Process Tracing for examples of how to use the pid provider effectively.