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Wednesday, August 31, 2016
 
[Solaris] Memory Leak Checking with libumem

libumem is a userland memory allocator (a library) with some debugging features that enable easy identification and troubleshooting of process memory leaks and memory access errors. Apparently target application must either be linked with the library, or the library must be preloaded into the address space of the target process before users can take advantage of the diagnostic features offered by libumem.

Besides the diagnostic support, libumem strives to improve the memory allocation performance by creating and managing multiple independent caches each with a different buffer size. This results in good scaling due to reduced lock contention especially in multi-threaded applications with many threads allocating and deallocating memory concurrently. Evidently there will be a tradeoff somewhere that achieves better scalability; and the tradeoff in this case is a slight memory overhead. Keep in mind that some of this additional memory will be accounted for when examining the process for memory leaks.

Rest of this post details the steps involved in examining memory leaks with a simple native process as an example.

High-Level Steps:

  1. Runtime debugging features such as memory leak detection, buffer overflows can be controlled by UMEM_* environment variables. Check umem_debug(3MALLOC) man page for the complete list of environment variables along with brief description.

  2. Check if the target application was linked with libumem library (-lumem). If not, preload /usr/lib/libumem.so.* before running the application.

    eg.,

    1) Executable linked with libumem library

    % cc -g -o mleak -lumem leak.c
    % ldd mleak
            libumem.so.1 =>  /lib/libumem.so.1
            libc.so.1 =>     /lib/libc.so.1
    

    2) Executable not linked with libumem library

    % cc -g -o mleak leak.c
    % ldd mleak
            libc.so.1 =>     /lib/libc.so.1
    
    % export LD_PRELOAD_32=/usr/lib/libumem.so.1
    % export UMEM_DEBUG=default
    
    % ./mleak
    
  3. Memory leaks can be examined with the help of modular debugger, mdb. Couple of possibilities.

    • attach a live process to the mdb debugger and run relevant dcmds such as ::findleaks

      # echo ::findleaks | mdb -p `pgrep mleak`
    • generate a core image of the running process and examine the core file for memory leaks

      # gcore `pgrep mleak`
      gcore: core.7487 dumped
      
      # echo ::findleaks | mdb core.7487
        

Complete Example:

% cat -n leak.c

     1  #include <stdio.h>
     2  #include <stdlib.h>
     3  #include <unistd.h>
     4
     5  int *intblk()
     6  {
     7          int *someint = malloc( sizeof(int) * 2 );
     8          return malloc( sizeof(int) );
     9  }
    10
    11  void main()
    12  {
    13          int i = 0;
    14          while ( 1 ) {
    15                  int *ptr = intblk();
    16                  *ptr = (++i * 2);
    17                  if ( !(*ptr % 3) ) {
    18                          continue;
    19                  }
    20                  if ( *ptr > 500 ) {
    21                          abort();
    22                  }
    23                  free( ptr );
    24                  sleep( 1 );
    25          }
    26  }


% cc -g -o mleak  leak.c

# export UMEM_DEBUG=default
# export LD_PRELOAD_32=/usr/lib/libumem.so.1

# ./mleak &
[1] 22427

High level summary memory leak report

mdb's findleaks dcmd displays the potential memory leaks. The summary leak report shows the bufctl address along with the topmost stack frame at the point when the memory was allocated.

eg., contd.,

# mdb -p `pgrep mleak`
Loading modules: [ ld.so.1 libumem.so.1 libc.so.1 ]

> ::findleaks

CACHE     LEAKED   BUFCTL CALLER
000b0008      52 002cc780 intblk+4
000b0008      17 002cc8e8 intblk+0x10
------------------------------------------------------------------------
   Total      69 buffers, 1104 bytes

Stack trace for each leak

To get the stack trace for a memory allocation that resulted in a leak, dump the bufctl structure. The address of this structure can be obtained from the output of the findleaks dcmd (highlighted in blue in above output).

eg., contd.,

> 002cc780::bufctl_audit

            ADDR          BUFADDR        TIMESTAMP           THREAD
                            CACHE          LASTLOG         CONTENTS
          2cc780           2c3fe0    50963bfdaab48                1
                            b0008                0                0
                 libumem.so.1`umem_cache_alloc+0x148
                 libumem.so.1`umem_alloc+0x6c
                 libumem.so.1`malloc+0x28
                 intblk+4
                 main+8
                 _start+0x108

> 002cc8e8::bufctl_audit

            ADDR          BUFADDR        TIMESTAMP           THREAD
                            CACHE          LASTLOG         CONTENTS
          2cc8e8           2c3f80    509643711ef91                1
                            b0008                0                0
                 libumem.so.1`umem_cache_alloc+0x148
                 libumem.so.1`umem_alloc+0x6c
                 libumem.so.1`malloc+0x28
                 intblk+0x10
                 main+8
                 _start+0x108

Detailed report in one shot

To obtain a detailed leak report that shows the summary report along with stack traces for each memory allocation that ended up with a leak, run findleaks dcmd with -d option. -fv options provide some additional detail.

eg., contd.,

> ::findleaks -d

CACHE     LEAKED   BUFCTL CALLER
000b0008      52 002cc780 intblk+4
000b0008      17 002cc8e8 intblk+0x10
------------------------------------------------------------------------
   Total      69 buffers, 1104 bytes

umem_alloc_16 leak: 52 buffers, 16 bytes each, 832 bytes total

            ADDR          BUFADDR        TIMESTAMP           THREAD
                            CACHE          LASTLOG         CONTENTS
          2cc780           2c3fe0    50963bfdaab48                1
                            b0008                0                0
                 libumem.so.1`umem_cache_alloc+0x148
                 libumem.so.1`umem_alloc+0x6c
                 libumem.so.1`malloc+0x28
                 intblk+4
                 main+8
                 _start+0x108

umem_alloc_16 leak: 17 buffers, 16 bytes each, 272 bytes total

            ADDR          BUFADDR        TIMESTAMP           THREAD
                            CACHE          LASTLOG         CONTENTS
          2cc8e8           2c3f80    509643711ef91                1
                            b0008                0                0
                 libumem.so.1`umem_cache_alloc+0x148
                 libumem.so.1`umem_alloc+0x6c
                 libumem.so.1`malloc+0x28
                 intblk+0x10
                 main+8
                 _start+0x108

Histogram of the size of the non-freed allocations

[cache]::umem_malloc_info reports information about malloc()'s by size for the memory allocations that weren't free()'d - hence leaked. ::umem_malloc_info output can be used to figureout the maximum allocation in a particular buffer.

eg., contd.,

> 000b0008::umem_malloc_info -gz

CACHE     BUFSZ MAXMAL BUFMALLC  AVG_MAL   MALLOCED   OVERHEAD  %OVER
000b0008     16      8       69        7        484       5043 1041.9%

malloc size  ------------------ Distribution ------------------ count
          4 |@@@@@@@@@@@@                                       17
          8 |@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@              52

The above output shows that there were 17 malloc( 4 ) (4 bytes) calls at intblk+0x10 with no matching free(<addr>) found anywhere. Disassembled code near that address is shown below.

eg., contd.,

> intblk+0x10::dis

__init_kernel_mode_misaligned_data_trap_handler+8:      nop
0x10994:                        illtrap   0x0
0x10998:                        illtrap   0x10000
0x1099c:                        illtrap   0x10000
0x109a0:                        illtrap   0x10000
0x109a4:                        illtrap   0x10000
intblk:                         save      %sp, -0x68, %sp
intblk+4:                       call      +0x1017c      <PLT=libumem.so.1`malloc>
intblk+8:                       mov       0x8, %o0
intblk+0xc:                     st        %o0, [%fp - 0x8]
intblk+0x10:                    call      +0x10170      <PLT=libumem.so.1`malloc>
intblk+0x14:                    mov       0x4, %o0
intblk+0x18:                    st        %o0, [%fp - 0x4]
intblk+0x1c:                    ld        [%fp - 0x4], %l0
intblk+0x20:                    or        %l0, %g0, %i0
intblk+0x24:                    ret
intblk+0x28:                    restore
0x109d4:                        illtrap   0x10000
0x109d8:                        illtrap   0x10000
0x109dc:                        illtrap   0x10000
0x109e0:                        illtrap   0x10000

> ::quit

Other related mdb dcmds of interest: umastat

Trivia:
Some of the libumem's debugging features work only for allocations that are smaller than 16 KB in size. Allocations larger than 16 KB could have reduced support. Such allocations are usually referred to as oversized allocations in memory leak reports generated by findleaks dcmd.

SEE ALSO:

  1. Java Platform, Standard Edition Troubleshooting Guide -> Diagnose Leaks in Native Code -> Find Leaks with libumem Tool
  2. How Memory Allocation Affects Performance in Multithreaded Programs
  3. Sun Studio: Investigating memory leaks with dbx (from 2005)
  4. Sun Studio: Investigating memory leaks with Collector/Analyzer (from 2005)
  5. Sun Studio: Gathering memory allocations/leaks data, from a running process (from 2005)

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Tuesday, August 09, 2016
 
New Article on OTN: Oracle Solaris Tools for Locality Observability

Oracle Solaris provides a variety of tools and APIs to observe, diagnose, control, and even fix issues related to locality and latency. A brand new technical article describing some of the tools and APIs that can be used to examine the locality of CPUs, memory and I/O devices is currently available on Oracle Technology Network (OTN) at the following URL.

      Oracle Solaris Tools for Locality Observability

Knowledge of these commands and tools is especially beneficial when planning and maintaining virtualized environments.

Target audience: application developers, system administrators, and application administrators.

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