GoProfiling using go tool pprof

Remarks

For more in profiling go programs visit the go blog.

Basic cpu and memory profiling

Add the following code in you main program.

var cpuprofile = flag.String("cpuprofile", "", "write cpu profile `file`")
var memprofile = flag.String("memprofile", "", "write memory profile to `file`")

func main() {
    flag.Parse()
    if *cpuprofile != "" {
        f, err := os.Create(*cpuprofile)
        if err != nil {
            log.Fatal("could not create CPU profile: ", err)
        }
        if err := pprof.StartCPUProfile(f); err != nil {
            log.Fatal("could not start CPU profile: ", err)
        }
        defer pprof.StopCPUProfile()
    }
    ...
    if *memprofile != "" {
        f, err := os.Create(*memprofile)
        if err != nil {
            log.Fatal("could not create memory profile: ", err)
        }
        runtime.GC() // get up-to-date statistics
        if err := pprof.WriteHeapProfile(f); err != nil {
            log.Fatal("could not write memory profile: ", err)
        }
        f.Close()
    }
}

after that build the go program if added in main go build main.go. Run main program with flags defined in code main.exe -cpuprofile cpu.prof -memprof mem.prof. If the profiling is done for test cases run the tests with same flags go test -cpuprofile cpu.prof -memprofile mem.prof

Basic memory Profiling

var memprofile = flag.String("memprofile", "", "write memory profile to `file`")

func main() {
    flag.Parse()
    if *memprofile != "" {
        f, err := os.Create(*memprofile)
        if err != nil {
            log.Fatal("could not create memory profile: ", err)
        }
        runtime.GC() // get up-to-date statistics
        if err := pprof.WriteHeapProfile(f); err != nil {
            log.Fatal("could not write memory profile: ", err)
        }
        f.Close()
    }
}
go build main.go
main.exe -memprofile mem.prof
go tool pprof main.exe mem.prof

Set CPU/Block profile rate

// Sets the CPU profiling rate to hz samples per second
// If hz <= 0, SetCPUProfileRate turns off profiling
runtime.SetCPUProfileRate(hz) 

// Controls the fraction of goroutine blocking events that are reported in the blocking profile
// Rate = 1 includes every blocking event in the profile
// Rate <= 0 turns off profiling
runtime.SetBlockProfileRate(rate)

Using Benchmarks to Create Profile

For a non-main packages as well as main, instead of adding flags inside the code, write benchmarks in the test package , for example:

func BenchmarkHello(b *testing.B) {
    for i := 0; i < b.N; i++ {
        fmt.Sprintf("hello")
    }
}

Then run the test with the profile flag

go test -cpuprofile cpu.prof -bench=.

And the benchmarks will be run and create a prof file with filename cpu.prof (in the above example).

Accessing Profile File

once a prof file has been generated, one can access the prof file using go tools:

go tool pprof cpu.prof

This will enter into a command line interface for exploring the profile

Common commands include:

(pprof) top

lists top processes in memory

(pprof) peek

Lists all processes, use regex to narrow search.

(pprof) web

Opens an graph (in svg format) of the process.

An example of the top command:

69.29s of 100.84s total (68.71%)
Dropped 176 nodes (cum <= 0.50s)
Showing top 10 nodes out of 73 (cum >= 12.03s)
      flat  flat%   sum%        cum   cum%
    12.44s 12.34% 12.34%     27.87s 27.64%  runtime.mapaccess1
    10.94s 10.85% 23.19%     10.94s 10.85%  runtime.duffcopy
     9.45s  9.37% 32.56%     54.61s 54.16%  github.com/tester/test.(*Circle).Draw
     8.88s  8.81% 41.36%      8.88s  8.81%  runtime.aeshashbody
     7.90s  7.83% 49.20%     11.04s 10.95%  runtime.mapaccess1_fast64
     5.86s  5.81% 55.01%      9.59s  9.51%  github.com/tester/test.(*Circle).isCircle
     5.03s  4.99% 60.00%      8.89s  8.82%  github.com/tester/test.(*Circle).openCircle
     3.14s  3.11% 63.11%      3.14s  3.11%  runtime.aeshash64
     3.08s  3.05% 66.16%      7.85s  7.78%  runtime.mallocgc
     2.57s  2.55% 68.71%     12.03s 11.93%  runtime.memhash