Electronic Design

Tool Debugs Linux Kernels Without Instrumented Code

Designers can trace applications within a Linux kernel with SpyKer, an event trace and visualization tool from LynuxWorks. Prior to this release, kernel tracing required a custom kernel with instrumented code so the trace application could hook into the kernel.

SpyKer is useful for kernel, device driver, and application development. Designers don't have to make any modifications, since it places itself between the operating system and the application. SpyKer doesn't need rebooting to use, either.

Compatible with standard and real-time Linux operating systems, including LynuxWorks' BlueCat Linux, SpyKer works with the company's LynxOS. This proprietary real-time operating system provides a Linux-compatible API and operating environment. Once loaded, SpyKer hooks into the operating system and records time-stamped events of the operating-system kernel, libraries, and application code calls. These events can be displayed in real time or recorded for later viewing and analysis.

The SpyKer user interface can selectively display events. Developers, then, can concentrate on specific applications or the entire system as necessary. Likewise, developers can examine an arbitrary set of system functions that are important to them.

While SpyKer will be handy for application developers, it's indispensible for embedded development where proper timing and sequencing is imperative. It's available now for $999 per copy.

LynuxWorks Inc., 2239 Samaritan Dr., San Jose, CA 95124; (408) 879-3900; fax (408) 879-3920; www.lynuxworks.com.

TAGS: Components
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