NVBit: A Dynamic Binary Instrumentation Framework for NVIDIA GPUs

Binary instrumentation frameworks are widely used to implement profilers, performance evaluation, error checking, and bug detection tools. While dynamic binary instrumentation tools such as PIN and DynamoRio are supported on CPUs, GPU architectures currently only have limited support for similar capabilities through static compile-time tools, which prohibits instrumentation of dynamically loaded libraries that are foundations for modern high-performance applications. This work presents NVBit, a fast, dynamic, and portable, binary instrumentation framework, that allows users to write instrumentation tools in CUDA/C/C++ and selectively apply that functionality to pre-compiled binaries and libraries executing on NVIDIA GPUs. Using dynamic recompilation at the SASS level, NVBit analyzes GPU kernel register requirements to generate efficient ABI compliant instrumented code without requiring the tool developer to have detailed knowledge of the underlying GPU architecture. NVBit allows basic-block instrumentation, multiple function injections to the same location, inspection of all ISA visible state, dynamic selection of instrumented or uninstrumented code, permanent modification of register state, source code correlation, and instruction removal. NVBit supports all recent NVIDIA GPU architecture families including Kepler, Maxwell, Pascal and Volta and works on any pre-compiled CUDA, OpenACC, OpenCL, or CUDA-Fortran application.

Stephen W. Keckler (NVIDIA)
Publication Date: 
Saturday, October 12, 2019