The perf tool was introduced with kernel version 2.6.31 but several major releases later, knowing which of its many features to use when and how to interpret the results is still challenging for many users. In this talk I will present a brief overview of the performance counters provided by modern x86 hardware followed by a discussion of the various monitoring capabilities offered by perf, when to use which and how to begin to interpret the results.
This is intended as an introductory talk for those with no significant experience using perf or undertaking performance analysis. An understanding of programming and architecture basics will be helpful.
[This talk could be extended to an hour if required, it could also be presented instead as a workshop or as a talk plus an associated workshop]