Linux Process Sampling

Scott Edwards supadupa at
Thu Aug 19 12:16:17 MDT 2010

On Thu, Aug 19, 2010 at 1:08 PM, Dave Smith <dave at> wrote:
> In Mac OS X, I can use the "Activity Monitor" app to sample a process.
> It shows the call tree at the moment, which is very handy to debug a
> runaway process. I can find no such feature in Linux, so a co-worker
> whipped up a script to use gdb to attach to a process repeatedly, dump
> stack traces, and build a call tree. This works okay, but is very slow.
> Mac OS X can sample a process in a few seconds. Mine can take a few
> minutes (to sample it 10 times, for example).
> Google turned up this, but I can't seem to download the code:
> Does anyone have any other tools for sampling a process's call stack?
> --Dave

strace can show what system, and some lib calls are being called
(live).  qprof says it can do profiling (which is probably closer to
what you're after).


Scott Edwards.

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