VampirTrace Plugin Counters

Plugin Counters are a new feature of VampirTrace which were included in version 5.9 to record external counters. They enable developers and performance analysts to extend the functionality of VampirTrace without touching or recompiling the source code of their application (as for manual instrumentation) or VampirTrace itself. VampirTrace can use different Plugin Counters in parallel, so the performance analyst has to decide which ones are important for him, as every additional data gathering might have a negative impact on the performance. Asynchronous plugins are supported since VampirTrace version 5.11.


Once you have downloaded and compiled a plugin, copy the resulting library to a folder, which is part of your LD_LIBRARY_PATH. Each plugin defines its own metrics, so have a look at the provided README files. To enable the tracing of a specific metric, you should set the environment variable VT_PLUGIN_CNTR_METRICS. It is set in the following manner:

export VT_PLUGIN_CNTR_METRICS=_[:_[:...]]

As an example, if you have a library named, with the event page_faults, set it with

export VT_PLUGIN_CNTR_METRICS=KswEvents_page_faults

Multiple events can be concatenated with using :'s


Kernel Tracing Software Events

This plugin allows to read the following software events with a newer (>=2.6.32) linux kernel:

  • Number of CPU migrations
  • Task Clocks
  • Page Faults
  • Context Switches

LibSensors monitoring

This plugin allows to read lm-sensor values, which might for example represent processor temperatures or fan speeds, while tracing your application. The available lm-sensors-events depend highly on your system.

External Counter Events

This plugin allows to read external counters from the dataheap infrastructure. Write a mail to Michael Kluge for more information on this decentral and convenient infrastructure for monitoring data sources.

Other Events

Some Score-P plugins that are available on github can also be used with VampirTrace.

Development Guide

Have a look at the Plugin Counter Manual to learn more about how to implement a plugin.


Robert Schoene


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Last modified: Sep 08, 2016