[lldb-dev] [LLVMdev] Runtime introspection of "Release Mode" programs using LLVM or LLDB

Jonathan Roelofs jonathan at codesourcery.com
Mon Nov 3 07:19:47 PST 2014

On 10/29/14 7:54 PM, Kenneth Camann wrote:
> Hi everyone,
> I'm working on a library for runtime introspection of C++ programs, for
> example, getting stack traces, decorating logs with source file
> information, etc. It currently uses LLVMObject and LLVMDebugInfo.
> There's a feature I want to add, but it requires that I understand where on
> the stack local variables are located.
> For this to work on x86-64, I would need to do whole "virtual unwinding"
> thing, i.e., create a library that can understand the DWARF call frame
> information. This is something that I do not want to do myself, because I
> would never have the resources to maintain it. LLVM and or LLDB must have
> code for doing this already though.
You can probably find what you need in libunwind/libcxxabi. See: 


> In fact, since this sort of dynamic inspection is kind of like debugging, I
> originally thought LLDB would work better in the first place. I actually
> tried early on to use LLDB, but I gave up quickly. The API seems to be
> designed so that you must always attach one process to another, using an
> operating system facility like ptrace.
> That is not really compatible with the idea of the program inspecting
> _itself_, although I think there is definitely a place for that, e.g.
> portable stack traces, source info without the need for __FILE__ and
> __LINE__ boilerplate, etc.
> Does LLDB support anything like this, and I just didn't find it? Or going
> another route, is there any plan for the DWARF classes in LLVMDebugInfo to
> ever support APIs for understanding the call frame info?
> If neither, any advice on what I should do?
> Thanks!
> Ken
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Jon Roelofs
jonathan at codesourcery.com
CodeSourcery / Mentor Embedded

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