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GILK: A Dynamic Instrumentation Tool for the Linux Kernel

David Pearce, Paul Kelly, A. J. Field, Uli Harder

Conference or Workshop Paper
TOOLS 2002, 12th International Conference on Computer Performance Evaluation, Modelling Techniques and Tools
March, 2002
Lecture Notes in Computer Science
Volume 2324
ISBN 3-540-43539-5

This paper describes a dynamic instrumentation tool for the Linux Kernel which allows a stock Linux kernel to be modified while in execution, with instruments implemented as kernel modules. The Intel x86 architecture poses a particular problem, due to variable length instructions, which this paper addresses for the first time. Finally we present a short case study illustrating its use in understanding i/o behaviour in the kernel. The source code is freely available for download.

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