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Displaying posts with tag: profiling (reset)
On database write workload profiling

I always have difficulties with complex analysis schemes, so fall back to something that is somewhat easier. Or much easier. Here I will explain the super-powerful method of database write workload analysis.

Doing any analysis on master servers is already too complicated, as instead of analyzing write costs one can be too obsessed with locking and there’s sometimes uncontrollable amount of workload hitting the server beside writes. Fortunately, slaves are much better targets, not only because writes there are single-threaded, thus exposing every costly I/O as time component, but also one can drain traffic from slaves, or send more in order to cause more natural workload.

Also, there can be multiple states of slave load:

  • Healthy, always at 0-1s lag, write statements are always immediate
  • Spiky, usually at 0s lag, but has jumps due to sometimes occuring slow statements
  • Lagging, because of …
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MySQL Server’s built-in profiling support

MySQL’s SHOW PROFILES command and its profiling support is something that I can’t believe I hadn’t spotted before today.

It allows you to enable profiling for a session and then record performance information about the queries executed. It shows details of the different stages in the query execution (as usually displayed in the thread state output of SHOW PROCESSLIST) and how long each of these stages took.

I’ll demonstrate using an example. First within our session we need to enable profiling, you should only do this in sessions that you want to profile as there’s some overhead in performing/recording the profiling information:

mysql> SET profiling=1;
Query OK, 0 rows affected (0.00 sec)

Now let’s run a couple of regular SELECT queries

mysql> SELECT COUNT(*) FROM myTable WHERE extra LIKE '%zkddj%';
| COUNT(*) |
|        0 | …
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Changes in using Profiling in MySQL 5.5

In the past I’ve used the profiling features (e.g. SHOW PROFILES) in MySQL to help with timing SQL statements, especially those in the < 10 millisecond range.

Out of habit I did use this to time all SQL statements however in MySQL 5.5.8 GA I've found this no longer to be representative.

As you can see, the query takes some 50+ms longer with profiling enabled, not to mention they have broken the Source_file column which I've actually used to troll the source code with.

mysql> set profiling=1;

4 rows in set (1.14 sec)
4 rows in set (1.15 sec)
4 rows in set (1.17 sec)

mysql> set profiling=0;

4 rows in set (0.37 sec)
4 rows in set (0.37 sec)
4 rows in set (0.37 sec)

Investigating further showed the cause. There appears to be some new overhead that causes profiling to log excessive amount of information.

mysql> show profile source for query 35; …
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more on PMP

Lately we have been especially enjoying the opportunities that Poor Man’s Profiler provides us – but also the technology has improved a lot too – there have been few really useful mutations.

One mutation (hyper-pmp) was Ryan Mack’s approach of having somewhat more efficient sampling – instead of firing gdb each time, he instructed gdb to get backtraces every time monitored process gets a signal (SIGUSR2 for example). This allows to maintain a persistent debugger attachment – and then signal periodically to get stacks analyzed.

Other mutation was auto-pmp – high frequency polling of process state (e.g. how many threads are running), and when a certain threshold is exceeded – obtaining stacks for further analysis (this combines …

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It is a glorious day today – Poor Man’s Profiler (previously introduced here) just got its own website. Do visit it at – and contribute to better tomorrow.

on tools and operating systems

Sometimes people ask why do I use MacOSX as my main work platform (isn’t that something to do with beliefs?). My answer is “good foundation with great user interface”. Though that can be treated as “he must like unix kernel and look&feel!”, it is not exactly that.

What I like is that I can have good graphical stable environment with some mandatory tools (yes, I used OS-supplied browser, mail, etc), but beside that maintain the bleeding edge open-source space (provided by MacPorts).

Also what I like, is OS-supplied development and performance tools. DTrace included is awesome, yes, but Apple did put some special touch on it too. This is visualization environment for dtrace probes and other profiling/debugging tools:

Even the web browser (well, I upgraded to Safari4.0 ;-) provides some impressive debugging …

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Progress report on High Performance MySQL, Second Edition

It's been a while since I've written about progress on the book. I actually stopped working on it as much at the beginning of the month, because on October 31(st) I managed to finish a first draft of the last big chapter! Now I'm back to full-time work at my employer, and I'm working on the book in the evenings and weekends only. Read on for details of what I've been working on and what's next in the pipeline.

MySQL Toolkit version 848 released

This release of MySQL Toolkit fixes some minor bugs and adds new functionality to four of the tools. Some of the changes I made were in response to feedback I got at the recent MySQL Camp. I'm still working on some of the feature requests, such as daemon-izing certain tools.

For those who requested features for MySQL Query Profiler, the tab-separated format should give you the desired output: no zero rows, and variables are not renamed.

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