Note: while somewhat usable, Despiker is extremely experimental and unstable. For example, at the moment Despiker does not handle invalid profiling data and will crash with an assertion failure if it receives such data. Also, Despiker is likely to see only sporadic development until second half of 2015.
A frame-based profiler is a specialized profiling tool for interactive programs such as games, hence frame - an iteration of an event loop. Unlike a traditional profiler, which aggregates time spent in various parts of code, a frame-based profiler keeps track of time spent in each individual frame separately.
This allows to find not only where overhead occurs, but when it occurs. A frame-based profiler can find the exact frame when overhead was unexpectedly high (manifesting in a sharp FPS decrease, or lag), which would get averaged out with a normal profiler. It also allows to view how overhead in various parts of code evolves over time as the program (game) runs.
For more in-depth background on frame-based profiling, see blog posts about development of Tharsis.prof, the base library behind Despiker:
- Frame-based game profiling
- Optimizing memory usage of a frame-based profiler
- Frame-based profiling with D ranges
Despiker is a work in progress and will see interface and compatibility breaking changes in future.
See the tutorial.
Despiker should run on any platform with OpenGL 3.3 or newer, as long as there is a D compiler and a version of SDL for that platform. Despiker has only been tested on x86-64 Linux so far, and there are no official builds for other platforms yet.
If you encounter a problem getting Despiker to compile or run (see tutorial) on Windows, OSX or another platform, you are welcome to report a bug. You and even more welcome to fork Despiker and create a pull request, especially if you want that problem solved now instead of in a few months.
- (Somewhat, see above) cross-platform. Should work at least on Linux, Windows and OSX.
- Can profile a game in real-time as it runs, or afterwards, using dumped profiling data.
- Allows the user to move forward and backward between frames
- Can be used to profile multi-threaded code (using one Tharsis.prof Profiler per thread, as long as frames are consistent in all profiled threads.
- Can view variable values recorded by Tharsis.prof.
- Quick button to find the slowest frame (yes, not very sophisticated for now).
- GUI and main functionality are separate to make it easy to write new GUI frontends.
- GUI can be controlled almost fully from keyboard.
||Pause/resume current (real-time) frame view|
||Jump to the worst/slowest frame|
||This README, utility scripts.|
Despiker is released under the terms of the Boost Software License 1.0. This license allows you to use the source code in your own projects, open source or proprietary, and to modify it to suit your needs. However, in source distributions, you have to preserve the license headers in the source code and the accompanying license file.
Full text of the license can be found in file
LICENSE_1_0.txt and is also
Boost Software License - Version 1.0 - August 17th, 2003 Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person or organization obtaining a copy of the software and accompanying documentation covered by this license (the "Software") to use, reproduce, display, distribute, execute, and transmit the Software, and to prepare derivative works of the Software, and to permit third-parties to whom the Software is furnished to do so, all subject to the following: The copyright notices in the Software and this entire statement, including the above license grant, this restriction and the following disclaimer, must be included in all copies of the Software, in whole or in part, and all derivative works of the Software, unless such copies or derivative works are solely in the form of machine-executable object code generated by a source language processor. THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, TITLE AND NON-INFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE COPYRIGHT HOLDERS OR ANYONE DISTRIBUTING THE SOFTWARE BE LIABLE FOR ANY DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.
Despiker was created by Ferdinand Majerech aka Kiith-Sa kiithsacmp[AT]gmail.com .
Parts of code based on gfm created by Games from Mars.