Merge Tracing and Debugging


One Line Summary

Consider further integration of kernel debugging and tracing.


At the end of the day developers want to understand how bits and bytes move through the linux kernel and how that relates back to the linux source base. To that end the kernel debugger and the tracing sub systems have the same purpose in life.

In the 2.6.36 kernel the debugger can dump the ftrace buffer. What are the next logical steps to blend functionality of the tracing and debugger subsystems? Perhaps ftrace/perf can use the debugger via debugger scriptlets? Perhaps debugger events could be used with in ftrace/perf or created by the kernel debugger to implement watchpoints? Perhaps there should be a gdb-serial non-stopping user space interface to the kernel debugger akin to the functionality of gdb vmlinux /proc/kcore which can further integrate with tracing functionality.

As and example, innovations like the kernel gdb tracepoints ( could get merged into existing APIs to share between tracing and the debugger instead of completely duplicating existing infrastructure.


kgdb kdb ftrace perf


  • Jason Wessel

    Wind River


    Jason is a long time Linux developer since the early 90’s. He has worked on a wide range of projects over the years spanning from web servers, proxies, and qemu, to kernel drivers and debuggers.

    Jason currently works at Wind River as a product architect for the WR Linux core runtime. He is also the current KGDB maintainer.

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