[lldb-dev] How does attach work on non-Windows?

Jim Ingham via lldb-dev lldb-dev at lists.llvm.org
Wed Aug 26 15:04:17 PDT 2015

There is a way on OS X.  There is a sysctl that will give you information on the current process state, and one of the bits you get back says whether the process is being traced.  sysctl's are a generic UNIX thing, but I don't know if the bit OS X uses is shared with other Unix's.


> On Aug 26, 2015, at 2:20 PM, Zachary Turner via lldb-dev <lldb-dev at lists.llvm.org> wrote:
> Slightly related, but do other platforms have a way to check from an inferior if a debugger is present?
> We need to do this frequently from the test inferiors, and I see lots of different approaches used in the test programs, none of which work correctly on Windows.
> On Wed, Aug 26, 2015 at 2:09 PM Zachary Turner <zturner at google.com> wrote:
> On Windows, when we attach to process, we basically invoke a system call which tells the kernel to kick off the process necessary for a debugger to be able to communicate with the process.
> The end result of all this is that eventually the OS itself will generate a breakpoint in the inferior by injecting an additional thread into the inferior and breaking on that thread.
> LLDB picks this up, and the result is that LLDB stops and waits for the user to continue the inferior just as it would with any other breakpoint, and if you were to get a backtrace you might see something like this:
> looking at: Stack traces for SBProcess: pid = 12588, state = stopped, threads = 2, executable = test_with_dwarf_and_attach_to_process_with_id_api
> Stack trace for thread id=0x3428 name=None queue=None stop reason=none
>   frame #0: 0xffffffffffffffff ntdll.dll`DbgBreakPoint + 1
> Stack trace for thread id=0x4314 name=None queue=None stop reason=none
>   frame #0: 0x00000077908c2c None`None + -18446744071703589843
> My question is: Do other platforms have this concept of an OS-generated breakpoint?  Or when you attach to the process, would the first breakpoint opcode encountered by the inferior be one which was created by the user through some command from the debugger?
> This creates a problem for some of our tests, because we have this extra breakpoint that is messing up the stack frame expectations unless we issue a manual continue first to get past the initial breakpoitn and to the first user breakpoint.
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