LTTng CLUST: A system-wide unified CPU and GPU tracing tool for OpenCL applications

David Couturier, Michel R. Dagenais
Dept. of Computer and Software Eng., Polytechnique Montreal, P.O. Box 6079, Station Downtown, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, H3C 3A7
Advances in Software Engineering, 2015


   title={LTTng CLUST: A system-wide unified CPU and GPU tracing tool for OpenCL applications},

   author={Couturier, David and Dagenais, Michel R},



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As computation schemes evolve and many new tools become available to programmers to enhance the performance of their applications, many programmers started to look towards highly parallel platforms such as Graphical Processing Unit (GPU). Offloading computations that can take advantage of the architecture of the GPU is a technique that has proven fruitful in recent years. This technology enhances the speed and responsiveness of applications. Also, as a side effect, it reduces the power requirements for those applications and therefore extends portable devices battery life and helps computing clusters to run more power efficiently. Many performance analysis tools such as LTTng, strace and SystemTap already allow Central Processing Unit (CPU) tracing and help programmers to use CPU resources more efficiently. On the GPU side, different tools such as Nvidia’s NSight, AMD’s CodeXL and third party TAU and VampirTrace allow tracing Application Programming Interface (API) calls and OpenCL kernel execution. These tools are useful but are completely separate and none of them allow a unified CPU-GPU tracing experience. We propose an extension to the existing scalable and highly efficient LTTng tracing platform to allow unified tracing of GPU along with CPU’s full tracing capabilities.
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