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Pin 2.12 Release Notes
Pin is a tool for the instrumentation of programs. It supports Linux*
and Windows* executables for IA-32 and Intel(R) 64 architectures.

For license information, see LICENSE and <arch>/lib-ext/EXTLICENSE

For information on how to use Pin, read the manual in

Send questions and bug reports see

Example usage

This example applies to the Intel(R) 64 architecture.  For the IA-32 architecture, 
use "obj-ia32" instead of "obj-intel64".

To build and run a sample tool on Linux*:

    cd source/tools/SimpleExamples
    make obj-intel64/
    ../../../pin -t obj-intel64/ -- /bin/ls

    This will instrument and run /bin/ls, the output for this tool is in

To build and run a sample tool on Windows*:

    cd source\tools\SimpleExamples
    make opcodemix.dll
    ..\..\..\pin.exe -t obj-intel64\opcodemix.dll -- cmd /C dir
    This will instrument and run cmd /C dir, the output for this tool is in

Refer to the Examples section in the Pin User Guide for more usage examples.

   o Added support for Android. 
     See the "Additional Information for Using Pin on Android" section for more 
   o Added preliminary support for Mac OSX.
     See the "Additional Information for Using Pin on OSX*" section for more 

   o Pin is no longer supported on Linux distributions with old kernel version.
     See the "Additional Information for Using Pin on Linux*" section for more 

   o The version of the compiler you use to build a tool must be compatible
     with the pin kit. On Linux*, you can use gcc 3.4 or any later version.
     Note, however, that you cannot use gcc versions 4.5 or newer to compile
     Probe mode tools, since these versions create files with a new OS ABI version
     which is not compatible with the pin kit. You can also use Intel(R) C++ 
     On Windows*, pin supports tools built with Intel(R) C++ compiler 10.1 and 11.1.
     It also supports tools built with the Microsoft* Visual Studio C++ 
     compiler* version 14.0 (Visual Studio 2005, aka VC8), 
     15.0 (Visual Studio 2008, aka VC9) and 16.0 (Visual Studio 2010, aka VC10).
     Such tools require the VC8, VC9 or VC10 kit, respectively.
     This only applies to the compiler used to build a tool; the application can use 
     any compiler.

   o Pin on Windows* requires dbghelp.dll version  This DLL is
     distributed with the kit.

   o There is a known problem of using pin on systems protected by the
     "McAfee Host Intrusion Prevention"* antivirus software.  See the 
     "Additional Information for Using Pin on Windows*" section for more

   o There is a known problem of using pin on Linux systems that prevent the use
     of ptrace attach using the sysctl /proc/sys/kernel/yama/ptrace_scope. 
     See the "Additional information for using Pin on Linux*" section for more

   o Pin performs memory allocations in the application's address space.  
     As a result, memory allocations performed by the application can fail. 
     For example, some applications use the SmartHeap utility which could 
     perform huge memory allocations. Using the "-separate_memory 1" switch 
     may be helpful in some of these cases.  On Windows*, using Microsoft* 
     Visual C++ compiler* "editbin"* utility to rebase pinvm.dll and the
     pintool preferred loading addresses might be helpful as well, for
        editbin /REBASE:BASE=0x57000000 pinvm.dll
        editbin /REBASE:BASE=0x58000000 <pintool>
     is helpful in some Windows applications.

   o There are known problems using Pin with the Google Chrome web browser:
     On Windows, Pin may fail to attach to a running Chrome process.
     On Linux, Pin may crash when instrumenting Chrome.
     A possible workaround is to launch Chrome with the "--no-sandbox" command 
     line switch.

   o Pin will run on all Intel 64 architectures. An Intel IA-32 architecture needs the
     following features:
         C8 - CMPXCHG8B 
     Pentium(R) III processors do not have SSE2. Pentium(R) 4 processors can run Pin. 
     You can check the capabilities of your processor on Linux with the following 
         cat /proc/cpuinfo

   o Pin has not been tested on systems with non-Intel processors.
     Therefore, incompatible or proprietary instructions in non-Intel processors may cause 
     Pin to function incorrectly. Any attempt to instrument code not supported by Intel 
     processors may lead to failures.

Additional information for PinTool writers

   o Due to a compatibility issue between operating systems pin does *not*
     provide support for registering atexit functions inside pintools
     (which means that the behavior of a pintool that does so is
     undefined). If you need such functionality, please register a Fini

   o To invoke the help message from pin on Windows*, you MUST specify 
     some executable image after two dashes, even pin itself:
            pin -help -- pin

   o Some APIs from older versions of Pin have been deprecated and replaced 
     by more powerful, or simpler, interfaces in the current version of Pin.
     Usage of deprecated APIs in Pin Tools will trigger a compilation warning.
     You can #define PIN_DEPRECATED_WARNINGS=0 to disable these warnings.
     Please refer to the Pin Deprecated API section in the Pin User Guide for
     a list of the deprecated APIs and their replacements.

Additional information for using Pin on Windows*

General issues
        Pin tools are DLLs on Windows*.
        Avoid using alertable (interruptable) Windows* system calls in 
        tools.  The SleepEx, SignalObjectAndWait, WaitForSingleObjectEx,
        MsgWaitForMultipleObjectsEx, and WaitForMultipleObjectsEx 
        functions can be interrupted by APCs and callbacks intended for
        the application. This violates normal behavior of the application
        and pin assumptions. When this violation is detected, pin exits
        with an assert message.
        Pin provides transparent support for exceptions in the application,
        but prohibits using exceptions in the tool. If you need to assert
        some condition, use the ASSERT() macro defined by pin instead of 
        the standard C assert().
        The Image API does not work for gcc-compiled applications.
        There is a known problem of using pin on systems protected by the
        "McAfee Host Intrusion Prevention"* antivirus software. We did not
        test coexistence of pin with other antivirus products that perform 
        run-time execution monitoring.
        Pin may not instrument applications that restrict loading of DLLs from
        non-local drives if Pin and / or Pin tool binaries are located
        on a network drive. To workaround this problem, install all Pin and
        Pin tool binaries on a local drive.
Supported configurations
        Windows XP*, Windows Server* 2003, Windows Vista*, Windows Server* 2008
        and Windows 7* (except for UMS applications),   on Intel(R) IA-32 and
        Intel(R) 64 architecture.

Additional information for using Pin on Linux*

General issues
     There is a known problem of using Pin on Linux systems that prevent the use
     of ptrace attach via the sysctl /proc/sys/kernel/yama/ptrace_scope.
     In this case Pin is not able to use its default (parent) injection mode.
     To resolve this, either use the "-injection child" option or 
     set the kernel/yama/ptrace_scope sysctl to 0. 
     For more information regarding child injection, refer to the Injection 
     section in the Pin User Manual.
Supported configurations:

        New Pin features (such as attach/detach) and bug fixes have been found to work
        incorrectly on some old Linux OSs due to bugs in the Linux kernel fixed in more
        modern kernel versions. Therefore, pin is no longer supported on Linux distributions
        with kernel 2.4 such as RedHat EL3.

Linux tested configurations:

        | OS                              |IA32|Intel64|
        | Wind River Linux 4.0            | +  |       |
        | Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4      | +  |   +   |
        | Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5      | +  |   +   |
        | Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6      |    |   +   |
        | Red Hat Fedora 14               |    |   +   |
        | Red Hat Fedora 15               |    |   +   |
        | Red Hat Fedora 16               | +  |   +   |
        | Red Hat Fedora 17               |    |   +   |
        | SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 |    |   +   |
        | SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 | +  |   +   |
        | openSUSE 12.1                   | +  |       |
        | Ubuntu 10.04                    |    |   +   |
        | Ubuntu 12.04                    | +  |   +   |

Additional information for using Pin on OSX*


General issues

        o Probe mode is not yet supported on OSX.
        o There are known issues with the XPC mechanism added in OSX Lion.
        o Pin require the privileged task_for_pid system API, and is signed by
          an official Intel(R) certificate. When using pin through the system
          terminal, a security popup may appear asking for user confirmation. If
          the user is not logged in through the system GUI (SSH for example), the
          user must execute the following command prior to using Pin:
                   security authorize -l -c system.privilege.taskport
        o Pin documentation is not yet updated with the OSX support information.

Supported configurations:

        o Snow Leopard
        o Lion(*)
        o Mountain Lion(*)
        *   Some known XPC limitations, mainly in child process creation.

OSX tested configurations:

        | OS                              |IA32|Intel64|
        | Snow Leopard                    | +  |   +   |
        | Lion                            | +  |   +   |

Additional information for using Pin on Android*


General issues

        o Attach/Detach is not supported yet. 
        o LEVEL_PINCLIENT::PIN_GetSourceLocation is not supported. 

Supported configurations:

        o ICS (Android 4.0)
        o Honeycomb (Android 3)
More information: 
        o The recommended ndk version for building the Pin tools is: ndk r7.
        o  **ANDROID TUTORIAL** is avaliable at: <android-kit-root>/AndroidTutorial. 
           It includes a step-by-step tutorial for installing Pin,
           compiling the Pin tools and running Pin with a tool on android. 

******************************* Recent Changes *******************************

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.12 / 56759
   o New APIs were added which allow the tool to manipulate registers of any size. Please refer to the user
     guide, section REGVAL, for additional information. See SimpleExamples/regval.cpp for a typical usage
     example. For more complex examples, including CONTEXT modification, see the tests in the Regvalue
   o Internal lock usage in Pin APIs is documented.
   o New APIs were added which allow the tool to stop, examine and resume application threads. Please refer
     to the user guide, section STOPPED_THREAD, for additional information.

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.12 / 54730
   o The PinTools makefile infrastructure has been changed. It is now simpler to use and to modify.
     For detailed information, read the documentation in source/tools/Config/makefile.config.
   o Nmake is no longer supported on windows. Either use make or the example vcproj file in the
     MyPinTool directory.
   o Android support has been added. An Android tutorial is avaliable at: <android-kit-root>/AndroidTutorial. 
   o The directory tree under <pinkit>/source/include has been changed, the include files are now located at: 
     <pinkit>/source/include/pin and <pinkit>/source/include/pin/gen. 

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.12 / 53271
   o A new API, PIN_AddThreadDetachProbedFunction, has been added on Linux. This allows the tool to receive
     a per-thread callback before each application thread is about to detach in probe mode. Please refer to
     the user guide for additional information.
   o The kit naming convention was changed: 
     The kit name no longer includes the architecture type, the architecture will be implicitly defined by
     the platform of the kit. 
     For example: pin-2.12-53271-gcc.4.4.7-intel64_ia32-linux is now called pin-2.12-53271-gcc.4.4.7-linux.

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.11 / 49306
   o Pin is now compiled with gcc 4.4.7 on Linux.
   o The Linux Pin kit runtime directory structure has changed: libstdc++ and libgcc_s have moved from:
     "intel64/runtime" to a new directory: "intel64/runtime/cpplibs" (and ia32 equivalent). The kit comes
     with these two libraries already installed and the tools' build process (makefile configuration) will
     automatically choose whether to link/run with them or not, depending on the compiler being used.
   o Updated versions of and libelf.a are available in the Pin package.
   o Pin is now launched using a c-based program instead of the previously used scripts. The sources for
     this launcher are available at <pinkit>/source/launcher-example.c

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.11 / 45931
   o An updated version of is available in the Pin package. This version is compatible with the
     latest gcc version. See the EXTLICENSE file for more details.
   o The thread fini callbacks and buffer callbacks may now be called on a different physical thread than
     the one that is exiting.
   o The PIN_GetThreadData and PIN_SetThreadData APIs may now access the TLS of a different thread than the
     calling thread by using the version of these APIs which takes a THREADID argument. The versions that do
     not take the THREADID argument are now deprecated.

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.10 / 45467
   o The THREAD_ATTACH_PROBED_CALLBACK callback was changed. It now enables the tool to receive the thread's
     signal mask at the attach point and to modify it.
   o Changed the default behavior when pin injection to child process fails. In case that pin injection 
     to a child process fails, the child process wouldn't terminate. Instead, it would run natively
     (without instrumentation).

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.10 / 43611
   o New APIs have been added to synchronize between threads.  See PIN_MUTEX, PIN_RWMUTEX,
   o Added a new knob "-tool_load_option". This knob enables the user to specify additional options
     for loading the tool. See the manual for more details.

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.10 / 41150
   o The Pthread example tool directory was removed from the example tools.
   o On Windows, dbghelp.dll is now included with the Pin kit. There's no need to manually
     download and install dbghelp.dll.
   o The API "INS_MemoryDisplacementSigned" is now deprecated. The two APIs,"INS_MemoryDisplacement" 
     and "INS_OperandMemoryDisplacement", have been changed to return the memory displacement as
     ADDRDELTA. This means signed 32 bits value on IA32 and signed 64 bits value on 64 bits.
Changes added _After_ Pin 2.9 / 40272
   o Guidelines for avoiding deadlocks in multi-threaded applications were 
     added to the "How to Instrument with Pin" section of the Pin User Guide.
   o Application level debugging API has been added. This API allows the user to debug the application
     that is running on top of Pin. It also allows a tool to interact with the debugger and provide
     extended commands to the debugger.

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.9 / 39501
   o The "use_dynsym" knob is now deprecated. On Linux, when invoking PIN_InitSymbols or
     PIN_InitSymbolsAlt, both the SYMTAB and the DYNSYM tables will be processed.
     This change does not affect Windows.
   o Added a new PIN_ERRTYPE - PIN_ERR_ACCESS_DENIED. This type signifies that an access to a file was denied
     due to bad permissions.
   o The API "RTN_No" is now deprecated. A new API "RTN_Id" has been added to replace it. The function returns
     a unique Id for the RTN. The Id is globally unique i.e. an Id will not appear in two images. When
     unloading and reloading an image, it is most likely that a RTN will receive a different Id.

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.8 / 39028
   o On Linux, Pin allows tools to see an instrument IFUNC symbols.
     To enable this feature the tool needs to call PIN_InitSymbolsAlt(SYMBOL_INFO_MODE mode)
     with the IFUNC_SYMBOLS flag set.
     Use the new API SYM_IFunc(SYM x) to find if a given symbol is an IFUNC symbol.

   o On Windows*, Pin supports tools built with Intel(R) C++ compiler 10.1 and 11.1 .

Changes added _After_ Pin 2.8 / 37832
   o On Linux, Pin is now checking the sysctl /proc/sys/kernel/yama/ptrace_scope and providing
     relevant error message in case it is set to '1'.
     See the "Additional information for using Pin on Linux*" section for more information.
   o On Linux, the following changes have been made for IMG and SEC objects used inside image-load callback. 
     While parsing the image Pin maps the whole image into store before calling the image-load callback. 
     Pin now umaps this copy of the file after the image-load callback returns to reduce memory use. 
     The addresses provided by IMG_StartAddress() and SEC_Data() point into the mapped image file and are 
     therefore only valid inside the image-load callback or after IMG_Open().
   o A new API, PIN_ExitApplication, was added. This API terminates the current process after calling the 
     relevant thread and process exit callbacks.
   o A new API, RTN_InsHeadOnly, was added. This API provides a faster alternative to RTN_InsHead for tools 
     that want to examine only the first INS of an RTN.

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.8 / 37300
   o The FPSTATE type used by the API's PIN_GetContextFPState() and PIN_SetContextFPState()
     has changed slightly.  The "_st" and "_xmm" fields have been renamed and redefined
     to better expose the structure of these FP registers.  Code that refers to these
     fields will fail to compile (because the field names have changed), and authors will
     need to port to the new layout.

   o If you build Pin tools _without_ using the makefile or VS project file provided in
     the Pin kit, you will need to add the following directory to the #include search path:


New Features added _After_ Pin 2.8 / 37081
   o The Pin User Guide was updated with a list of Pin deprecated APIs and their

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.8 / 36909
   o Pin tools are now encouraged to dynamically link with libelf and libdwarf.
     Tools should link with the Pin-compatible versions of and that were
     added to the Pin package.
   o PIN_UndecorateSymbolName() was reimplemented without using libiberty. 
     The libiberty.a library was removed from the Pin package. Pin tools no longer need to
     link with this library.

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.8 / 36111
   o PIN_RemoveInstrumentation() now removes all instrumentation but
     does not remove the saved ahead-of-time intrumentation requests, so
     they will be re-applied if instructions which they targeted are
     re-executed. This is consistent with its behavior for JIT
     instrumentation; instrumentation callbacks continue to be made
     after PIN_RemoveInstrumentation() has been called.
     Previously PIN_RemoveInstrumentation() also cleared the saved
     ahead-of-time intrumentation requests, so they would not be re-applied.

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.8 / 33199
   o The ability to debug 64-bit Pin tools on Linux has been somewhat improved.  GDB
     will now normally find the tool's shared libraries, which allows you to debug
     crashes that occur when calling into a library.

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.7 / 31933
   o Pin allows tools to create their own internal, non-instrumented threads. The
     following APIs have been added to support this feature:
      PIN_SpawnInternalThread() - Create a new internal thread
      PIN_ExitThread() - Terminate the current internal thread
      PIN_WaitForThreadTermination() - Wait until the thread terminates and return exit code
      PIN_IsApplicationThread() - Check the type of the thread (application's or internal)
      PIN_Sleep()   - Delay the calling thread for the specified time interval
      PIN_Yield()   - Yield the processor to another thread
      PIN_ThreadUid() - Get unique (not reusable) identifier of the current thread in Pin.
      PIN_IsProcessExiting() - Tool's threads should periodically call this function to check 
                               if the application is about to exit.
      PIN_AddFiniUnlockedFunction() - Yet another method to terminate tool's threads gracefully
                                      when the process is about to exit.
    Many Pin APIs, that are primarily intended for application's threads, are also available in 
    internal threads. Look at the API's description or the description of the corresponding 
    group of APIs to check whether specific API is available in internal threads.
   o A new API, PIN_InsertCallProbed was added. This API is used to insert a call to a
     notification routine before a specific instruction.  To guarantee safe usage of
     this API the required location must have a single instruction that follows the
     following restrictions:
     - The size of the instruction is at least 5 bytes (in IA32) or 7 bytes (in Intel64).
     - The instruction is not a control flow instruction.
     - The instruction has no memory operand.
     If the location is prepared in advance to be used with this API, the user can put
     a large size NOP instruction that always follows the above restrictions.

     There is also a new API, PIN_IsSafeForProbedInsertion, to check if the location is
     safe for inserting call (i.e. it follows the restrictions of PIN_InsertCallProbed).

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.7 / 29972
   o PIN_UndecorateSymbolName() is supported now on Linux and FreeBSD. Pin tools should be statically
     linked with libiberty.a library, which became a part of Pin package like libelf and libdwarf.

   o Internal exception handling support was added on Windows. The new supported APIs are
     PIN_AddInternalExceptionHandler(), PIN_TryStart(), PIN_TryEnd(), PIN_SetPhysicalContextReg(),
     PIN_GetPhysicalContextReg(), PIN_SetPhysicalContextFPState(), PIN_GetPhysicalContextFPState().
     These APIs allow the user to be notified upon internal exception (generated by pin / tool) and
     handle it. If the exception was generated unintentionally, it may indicate about a bug in pin / tool.

   o A new version of dbghelp is needed on Windows*.  For more information see the
     "Additional Information for Using Pin on Windows*" section.

   o There is a new API PIN_RaiseException() that allows a tool to emulate an exception
     into the application.

   o New APIs are provided to allow tools more easily to iterate over the memory operands
     of an instruction without having to explicitly check for odd cases such as the READ2
     operand of SCAS. The examples such as ManualExamples/pinatrace.cpp have been
     rewritten to use the new interface.

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.6 / 27887
   o On Windows, Pintools must be compiled with /D_SECURE_SCL=0.  Please see the User's
     Guide for more information on mandatory compiler and linker swtiches.

   o Pin on Windows* now supports "early injection". The injection occurs right after 
     kernel32.dll is loaded and initialized. This allows Pin to instrument 
     DllMain(fdwReason=DLL_PROCESS_ATTACH) of the rest of the implicitly loaded DLLs.
     The injection occurs when the application's loader is active and the system's loader 
     lock is acquired.

   o Pin on Windows* in Probe mode supports attach to a running process (using -pid 
     command line switch).

   o Pin on Windows* in Probe mode supports lite detach & reattach. 
     The new supported APIs are: PIN_AddDetachFunctionProbed(), PIN_DetachProbed(), 
     PIN_AttachProbed(). The -detach_reattach command line switch must be specified in 
     order to enable the feature.

   o In order to perform "early injection", attach, lite detach & reattach, Pin on Windows* 
     uses the debugging APIs.  Therefore, you must attach with a debugger *after* the Pin 
     injection takes place (In particular, don't enable the Windbg* "Debug child processes also" 
     button). Pin's -debug_instrumented_processes command line switch can be used 
     in order to get a message that debugger attach can be done.

   o The treatment of REP prefixed instructions in the IA-32 and Intel(R) 64 architectures has
     been changed. REP prefixed instructions are now treated as implicit loops, with
     IPOINT_BEFORE and IPOINT_AFTER instrumentation called before each iteration. This will
     affect instruction counts. PinTools/InstLib/icount.H shows how to collect an instruction
     count which only counts a REP prefixed instruction once, as Pin used to do.

   o The Pin User Manual now includes a section on optimizing the treatment of REP prefixed

   o As a result of the changes to REP prefixed instruction handling,
     VARIABLE_MEMORY_REFERENCE_SIZE has been deprecated. No instructions now have a
     variable memory reference size, so code which expected that can probably be removed from
     your tools.

   o On the IA-32 and Intel(R) 64 architectures CMOVcc, FCMOVcc and REP prefixed instructions
     are now treated as predicated.

   o Pin tools which use the REG_INST_Gn registers should consider using the new function
     PIN_ClaimToolRegister() to allocate them to avoid conflicts if you want to integrate
     multiple tools.

New Features added _After_ Pin 2.6 / 25945
   o Support for a new buffering API has been added for IA-32 and Intel(R) 64 architectures.
     This allows a tool to write data to a buffer for processing.  See PIN_DefineTraceBuffer() 
     for more information.


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