Comparison with SystemTap and DTrace

Feature Comparison

LTTng Systemtap DTrace
license Kernel tracer: GPLv2
Userspace tracer: LGPLv2.1 (library) and GPLv2 (tools)
operating system support Linux Linux Solaris, Mac OS X, BSD, QNX
processor support Kernel tracer: x86-32, x86-64, SPARC, SPARC64, ppc, ppc64, sh, sh64, ia64, s390, MIPS 32/64, ARM, (arch-agnostic core)
Userspace tracer: x86-32, x86-64, ppc, ppc64, S390, S390x, ARM, Alpha, ia64, Sparcv9 32/64
as per kprobes: x86-32, x86-64, ppc64, ia64, s390, arm, sparc? x86-32, x86-64, SPARC, ppc, ppc64
overhead low high high
core developers open community open community open community
development began January 2005 January 2005 October 2001
development status ongoing ongoing stable with continuing development
Collaborators Red Hat, IBM, Hitachi, and Oracle Oracle (owner of Sun Microsystems)
target audience application (userspace) developers, kernel developers, users, sysadmins developers, users, sysadmins developers, users, sysadmins
target usage debugging, tracing, profiling, monitoring debugging, tracing, profiling debugging, tracing, profiling
style C scripting scripting
speculative tracing work in progress yes (from first principles via auxiliary data and control structures) yes
binary tracing yes yes ?
early boot tracing not "as early as it could" yet not yet [[] yes
probe execution optimized native code optimized native code interpreted bytecodes
Probing Capability
number of available symbolic probe points in the kernel thousands (functions, tracepoints, markers) millions (statements, markers) thousands (functions, markers)
type of instrumentation available in user-space Markers inserted by the developer. GDB tracepoints are used for statement and function instrumentation. statements, functions functions, developer-