pmtrace(1) — Linux manual page


PMTRACE(1)               General Commands Manual              PMTRACE(1)

NAME         top

       pmtrace - command line performance instrumentation

SYNOPSIS         top

       pmtrace [-q?]  [-c value | -e command | -v value] [-h host] [-S
       state] tag

DESCRIPTION         top

       pmtrace provides a simple command line interface to the trace
       Performance Metrics Domain Agent (PMDA) and the associated
       pcp_trace library.

       The default pmtrace behavior is to provide point trace data to
       the trace PMDA, using the tag argument as the identifying name
       associated with each trace point.  The tag then becomes an
       instance identifier within the set of trace.point metrics.

OPTIONS         top

       The available command line options are:

       -c value
            Allow an arbitrary counter value to be exported through the
            trace.count metrics.

       -e command
            Allow an arbitrary command to be executed.  This command
            will be measured as a transaction since it has well defined
            start and end points.  The information is made available
            through the trace.transact metrics.

       -h host
            Sent the trace data to the trace PMDA running on host,
            rather than the localhost.  This overrides use of the
            environment variable PCP_TRACE_HOST.

       -q   Suppress messages from a successful trace, so that pmtrace
            runs quietly.

       -S state
            Enable internal debugging and tracing.  The value of state
            is a bit-wise combination of debug flags as defined in
            pmtracestate(3), and may be specified using the decimal or
            hexadecimal syntax prescribed by strtol(3).

       -v value
            Allow an arbitrary floating point value to be exported
            through the trace.observe metrics.

       -?   Display usage message and exit.

DIAGNOSTICS         top

       All are generated on standard error and are intended to be self-

       The pmtrace exit status is always zero except when the -e option
       is in use, in which case the exit status of command is returned.

FILES         top

            source code for pmtrace

ENVIRONMENT         top

       Since pmtrace uses the libpcp_trace library routines, the
       environment variables PCP_TRACE_HOST, PCP_TRACE_PORT, and
       PCP_TRACE_TIMEOUT are all honored.  Refer to pmdatrace(3) for a
       detailed description of the semantics of each.


       Environment variables with the prefix PCP_ are used to
       parameterize the file and directory names used by PCP.  On each
       installation, the file /etc/pcp.conf contains the local values
       for these variables.  The $PCP_CONF variable may be used to
       specify an alternative configuration file, as described in

SEE ALSO         top

       pmcd(1), pmdatrace(1), pmprobe(1), PMAPI(3) and pmdatrace(3).

COLOPHON         top

       This page is part of the PCP (Performance Co-Pilot) project.
       Information about the project can be found at 
       ⟨⟩.  If you have a bug report for this manual
       page, send it to  This page was obtained from the
       project's upstream Git repository
       ⟨⟩ on 2023-12-22.
       (At that time, the date of the most recent commit that was found
       in the repository was 2023-12-16.)  If you discover any rendering
       problems in this HTML version of the page, or you believe there
       is a better or more up-to-date source for the page, or you have
       corrections or improvements to the information in this COLOPHON
       (which is not part of the original manual page), send a mail to

Performance Co-Pilot               PCP                        PMTRACE(1)

Pages that refer to this page: pmdatrace(1)pmdatrace(3)