DTrace: A Course with Max Bruning

If you’re a system support staff member, system administrator, developer or anyone else who has heard about DTrace and is interested in learning more about it, you’re in luck. Max Bruning will be teaching a three day course that will introduce DTrace and teach common performance analysis techniques. You’ll quickly learn about DTrace and some practical methods for applying it.

Max will discuss the core features of DTrace that are available in many enterprise and cloud computing environments, and will teach from a Joyent SmartMachine, a restricted environment that provides these features. Max will simulate performance issues based on real-world cases for students to solve. This is a unique opportunity for a student to put the methodologies they’ve learned into practice and see how they work first-hand.

On completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Explain Dynamic Tracing and DTrace
  • Describe DTrace features, including probes, providers, actions, aggregations
  • Identify opportunities for improving performance using DTrace
  • Use pre-written DTrace one-liners and scripts
  • Solve performance issues using workload characterization
  • Solve performance issues using latency analysis
  • Use DTrace to analyze system calls in custom ways
  • Understand the D language, actions, and variables
  • Profile CPU usage of user-level applications, identifying hot code paths
  • Interpret and generate Flame Graphs
  • Analyze I/O latency using the syscall and sched providers
  • Analyze process execution using the proc provider
  • Investigate virtual memory events using the vminfo provider
  • Investigate system events using the sysinfo provider
  • Use the pid provider for application analysis
  • Understand the plockstat provider
  • Explain the role of USDT providers
  • Use USDT providers for application analysis
  • Understand the general process for adding USDT providers, and the opportunities this creates for application performance analysis and debugging
  • Add DTrace to your skill set


UNIX fundamentals: understand syscalls; strace/truss experience is idealProgramming experience: shell scripting is fine; awk is great

To learn more about the course and register, visit the Eventbrite page.

Post written by rachelbalik