Julia Evans

A perf cheat sheet

Right now I’m working on finishing up a zine about perf that I started back in May, and I’ve been struggling with how to explain all there is to say about perf in a concise way.

Yesterday I finally hit on the idea of making a 1-page cheat sheet reference which covers all of the basic perf command line arguments. I’m going to make it the centerfold for the zine.

It has a lot of the basics, as well as some slightly more advanced stuff – for example sudo perf top -e raw_syscalls:sys_enter -ns comm -d 1 counts system calls by process and shows you live updates, and stdbuf -oL perf top -e net:net_dev_xmit -ns comm | strings counts sent network packets by process and prints an update every second. I didn’t realize you could do either of those things!

All the examples in this cheat sheet are taken (with permission) from http://brendangregg.com/perf.html, which is a fantastic perf reference and has many more great examples.

Here it is. You can click to make it bigger. There’s also a print version: perf cheat sheet PDF.

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