Monday, September 4, 2023

DTrace at 20

Bryan Cantrill:

Two decades ago today, DTrace integrated into the operating system. Much has changed in the last 20 years -- but one thing has remained true: we ourselves still use it on a daily basis.


I reminisced a bit after the 5th anniversary (15 years ago!), describing in particular the harrowing day before we integrated.

That day continues to be memorable; @ahl and I talked about it on a recent episode of Oxide and Friends.

Ten years ago -- on DTrace’s 10th birthday -- I described some of the things that we had added to DTrace over that decade.


Back in the day Sun ran a contest, “Try before you buy”. Get a machine (an Ultra 60, IIRC), for 60 days shipped to you free.

Blog about something interesting you did with it, enter the contest, and maybe win the machine.

I instrumented Sendmail with DTrace, evaluating different queuing strategies (along with a comparison of Solaris and FreeBSD on the machine). Found a sendmail bug along the way, and won the contest.


Update (2023-09-06): Jeff Johnson:

It’s so sad what SIP has done to DTrace on Mac, rendered it almost useless.

iPologists always say “You can disable SIP”, but as a developer you really can’t, because then your testing environment is very different from your customers’ environment.

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