Sun Studio 12: Performance Analyzer

Program Control of Data Collection

If you want to control data collection from your program, the Collector shared library, contains some API functions that you can use. The functions are written in C. A Fortran interface is also provided. Both C and Fortran interfaces are defined in header files that are provided with the library.

The API functions are defined as follows.

void collector_sample(char *name);
void collector_pause(void);
void collector_resume(void);
void collector_thread_pause(unsigned int t);
void collector_thread_resume(unsigned int t);
void collector_terminate_expt(void);

Similar functionality is provided for JavaTM programs by the CollectorAPI class, which is described in The Java Interface.

The C and C++ Interface

There are two ways to access the C and C++ interface:

The Fortran Interface

The Fortran API libfcollector.h file defines the Fortran interface to the library. The application must be linked with -lcollectorAPI to use this library. (An alternate name for the library, -lfcollector, is provided for backward compatibility.) The Fortran API provides the same features as the C and C++ API, excluding the dynamic function and thread pause and resume calls.

Insert the following statement to use the API functions for Fortran:

include "libfcollector.h"

Note –

Do not link a program in any language with -lcollector. If you do, the Collector can exhibit unpredictable behavior.

The Java Interface

Use the following statement to import the CollectorAPI class and access the Java API. Note however that your application must be invoked with a classpath pointing to / installation_directory/lib/collector.jar where installation-directory is the directory in which the Sun Studio software is installed.


The Java CollectorAPI methods are defined as follows:

CollectorAPI.sample(String name)
CollectorAPI.threadPause(Thread thread)
CollectorAPI.threadResume(Thread thread)

The Java API includes the same functions as the C and C++ API, excluding the dynamic function API.

The C include file libcollector.h contains macros that bypass the calls to the real API functions if data is not being collected. In this case the functions are not dynamically loaded. However, using these macros is risky because the macros do not work well under some circumstances. It is safer to use collectorAPI.h because it does not use macros. Rather, it refers directly to the functions.

The Fortran API subroutines call the C API functions if performance data is being collected, otherwise they return. The overhead for the checking is very small and should not significantly affect program performance.

To collect performance data you must run your program using the Collector, as described later in this chapter. Inserting calls to the API functions does not enable data collection.

If you intend to use the API functions in a multithreaded program, you should ensure that they are only called by one thread. With the exception of collector_thread_pause() and collector_thread_resume(), the API functions perform actions that apply to the process and not to individual threads. If each thread calls the API functions, the data that is recorded might not be what you expect. For example, if collector_pause() or collector_terminate_expt() is called by one thread before the other threads have reached the same point in the program, collection is paused or terminated for all threads, and data can be lost from the threads that were executing code before the API call. To control data collection at the level of the individual threads, use the collector_thread_pause() and collector_thread_resume() functions. There are two viable ways of using these functions: by having one master thread make all the calls for all threads, including itself; or by having each thread make calls only for itself. Any other usage can lead to unpredictable results.