GPU Performance API for AMD GPUs
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GPU Performance API


The GPU Performance API (GPUPerfAPI, or GPA) is a powerful library, providing access to GPU Performance Counters. It can help analyze the performance and execution characteristics of applications using a Radeon™ GPU. This library is used by Radeon Compute Profiler and CodeXL as well as several third-party tools.

Table of Contents

Major Features

  • Provides a standard API for accessing GPU Performance counters for both graphics and compute workloads across multiple GPU APIs.
  • Supports Vulkan™, DirectX™ 12, DirectX 11, OpenGL, OpenCL™, and ROCm/HSA
  • Supports all current GCN-based Radeon graphics cards and APUs.
  • Supports both Windows and Linux
  • Provides derived "public" counters based on raw HW counters
  • "Internal" version provides access to some raw hardware counters. See "Public" vs "Internal" Versions for more information.

What's New

  • Version 3.2 (8/21/18)
    • Add support for additional GPUs and APUs.
    • Wrapped all GPA entrypoints in try/catch to ensure unhandled exceptions do not escape the GPA library.
    • Add VS2017 project files.
    • Bugs Fixed:

System Requirements

  • An AMD Radeon GCN-based GPU or APU
  • Radeon Software Crimson Adrenaline Edition 18.8.1 or later (Driver Packaging Version 18.30.01 or later).
  • Pre-GCN-based GPUs or APUs are no longer supported by GPUPerfAPI. Please use an older version (2.17) with older hardware.
  • Windows 7, 8.1, and 10
  • Ubuntu (16.04 and later) and RHEL (7 and later) distributions

Cloning the Repository

To clone the GPA repository, execute the following git commands

After cloning the repository, please run the following python script to retrieve the required dependencies (see for more information):

  • python Scripts/ has replaced the use of git submodules in the GPA repository

Source Code Directory Layout

  • Build -- contains both Linux and Windows build-related files
  • Common -- Common libs, header and source code not found in other repositories
  • docs -- contains documentation sources and a Doxygen configuration file
  • Src/DeviceInfo -- builds a lib containing the Common/Src/DeviceInfo code (Linux only)
  • Src/Examples -- contains the source code for a DirectX 12 and Vulkan sample which use GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPI -- builds a lib containing Src/GPUPerfAPI-Common/GPUPerfAPI.cpp (Linux only)
  • Src/GPUPerfAPI-Common -- contains source code for a Common library shared by all versions of GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPICL -- contains the source for the OpenCL™ version of GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPICounterGenerator -- contains the source code for a Common library providing all counter data
  • Src/GPUPerfAPICounters -- contains the source code for a library that can be used to query counters without an active GPUPerfAPI context
  • Src/GPUPerfAPIDX -- contains source code shared by the DirectX versions of GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPIDX11 -- contains the source for the DirectX11 version of GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPIDX12 -- contains the source for the DirectX12 version of GPUPerfAPI (Developer Preview)
  • Src/GPUPerfAPIGL -- contains the source for the OpenGL version of GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPIHSA -- contains the source for the ROCm/HSA version of GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPIUnitTests -- contains a small set of unit tests for GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/GPUPerfAPIVk -- contains the source for the Vulkan version of GPUPerfAPI
  • Src/PublicCounterCompiler -- source code for a tool to generate C++ code for public counters from text files defining the counters.
  • Src/PublicCounterCompilerInputFiles -- input files that can be fed as input to the PublicCounterCompiler tool
  • Scripts -- scripts to use to clone/update dependent repositories


The documentation for GPUPerfAPI can be found in each GitHub release. In the release .zip file or .tgz file, there will be a "docs" directory. Simply open the index.html file in a web browser to view the documentation.

The documentation is hosted publicly at:

"Public" vs "Internal" Versions

This open source release supports building both the "Public" and "Internal" versions of GPUPerfAPI. By default the Visual Studio solution and the Linux build scripts will produce what is referred to as the "Public" version of GPUPerfAPI. This version exposes "Public", or "Derived", counters. These are counters that are computed using a set of hardware counters. Until now, only the Public version of GPUPerfAPI was available on the AMD Developer website. As part of the open-source effort, we are also providing the ability to build the "Internal" versions of GPUPerfAPI. In addition to exposing the same counters as the Public version, the Internal version also exposes some of the hardware Counters available in the GPU/APU. It's important to note that not all hardware counters receive the same validation as other parts of the hardware on all GPUs, so in some cases accuracy of counter data cannot be guaranteed. The usage of the Internal version is identical to the Public version. The only difference will be in the name of the library an application loads at runtime and the list of counters exposed by the library. See the Build Instructions for more information on how to build and use the Internal version. In the future, we see there being only a single version of GPUPerfAPI, with perhaps a change in the API to allow users of GPA to indicate whether the library exposes just the Derived counters or both the Derived and the Hardware counters. We realize using the term "Internal" for something which is no longer actually Internal-to-AMD can be a bit confusing, and we will aim to change this in the future.

Known Issues

  • Adjusting the GPU clock mode on Linux is accomplished by writing to


    where <N> is the index of the card in question. By default this file is only modifiable by root, so the application being profiled would have to be run as root in order for it to modify the clock mode. It is possible to modify the permissions for the file instead so that it can be written by unprivileged users. The following command will achieve this. Note, however, that changing the permissions on a system file like this could circumvent security. Also, on multi-GPU systems, you may have to replace "card0" with the appropriate card number. Permissions on this file may be reset when rebooting the system:
    • sudo chmod ugo+w /sys/class/drm/card0/device/power_dpm_force_performance_level