profil(3) Library Functions Manual profil(3)

profil - execution time profile

Standard C library (libc, -lc)

#include <unistd.h>
int profil(unsigned short *buf, size_t bufsiz,
           size_t offset, unsigned int scale);
Feature Test Macro Requirements for glibc (see feature_test_macros(7)):


    Since glibc 2.21:
    In glibc 2.19 and 2.20:
    Up to and including glibc 2.19:

This routine provides a means to find out in what areas your program spends most of its time. The argument buf points to bufsiz bytes of core. Every virtual 10 milliseconds, the user's program counter (PC) is examined: offset is subtracted and the result is multiplied by scale and divided by 65536. If the resulting value is less than bufsiz, then the corresponding entry in buf is incremented. If buf is NULL, profiling is disabled.

Zero is always returned.

For an explanation of the terms used in this section, see attributes(7).

Interface Attribute Value
profil () Thread safety MT-Unsafe


Similar to a call in SVr4.

profil() cannot be used on a program that also uses ITIMER_PROF interval timers (see setitimer(2)).

True kernel profiling provides more accurate results.

gprof(1), sprof(1), setitimer(2), sigaction(2), signal(2)

2024-05-02 Linux man-pages 6.8