72. Profile Your Application
The following sections describe methods of profiling DPDK applications on different architectures.
72.1. Profiling on x86
Intel processors provide performance counters to monitor events. Some tools provided by Intel, such as Intel® VTune™ Amplifier, can be used to profile and benchmark an application. See the VTune Performance Analyzer Essentials publication from Intel Press for more information.
For a DPDK application, this can be done in a Linux* application environment only.
The main situations that should be monitored through event counters are:
- Cache misses
- Branch mis-predicts
- DTLB misses
- Long latency instructions and exceptions
Refer to the Intel Performance Analysis Guide for details about application profiling.
72.1.1. Profiling with VTune
To allow VTune attaching to the DPDK application, reconfigure a DPDK build
folder by passing
-Dc_args=-DRTE_ETHDEV_PROFILE_WITH_VTUNE meson option
and recompile the DPDK:
meson setup build
meson configure build -Dc_args=-DRTE_ETHDEV_PROFILE_WITH_VTUNE
ninja -C build
72.2. Profiling on ARM64
72.2.1. Using Linux perf
The ARM64 architecture provide performance counters to monitor events. The
perf tool can be used to profile and benchmark an application. In
addition to the standard events,
perf can be used to profile arm64
specific PMU (Performance Monitor Unit) events through raw events (
For more derails refer to the ARM64 specific PMU events enumeration.
72.2.2. Low-resolution generic counter
rte_rdtsc() provides a portable means to
get a wall clock counter in user space. Typically it runs at a lower clock frequency than the CPU clock frequency.
Cycles counted using this method should be scaled to CPU clock frequency.
72.2.3. High-resolution cycle counter
The alternative method to enable
rte_rdtsc() for a high resolution wall
clock counter is through the ARMv8 PMU subsystem. The PMU cycle counter runs
at CPU frequency. However, access to the PMU cycle counter from user space is
not enabled by default in the arm64 linux kernel. It is possible to enable
cycle counter for user space access by configuring the PMU from the privileged
mode (kernel space).
By default the
rte_rdtsc() implementation uses a portable
The example below shows the steps to configure the PMU based cycle counter on an ARMv8 machine.
git clone https://github.com/jerinjacobk/armv8_pmu_cycle_counter_el0
sudo insmod pmu_el0_cycle_counter.ko
Please refer to Compiling the DPDK Target from Source for generic details on compiling DPDK with meson.
In order to enable
rte_rdtsc(), user needs to configure the
meson setup --cross config/arm/arm64_armv8_linux_gcc -Dc_args='-DRTE_ARM_EAL_RDTSC_USE_PMU' build
The PMU based scheme is useful for high accuracy performance profiling with
rte_rdtsc(). However, this method can not be used in conjunction with
Linux userspace profiling tools like
perf as this scheme alters the PMU