VI man page on Plan9

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VI(1)									 VI(1)

       5i, ki, vi, qi - instruction simulators

       vi [ textfile ]
       vi pid
       5i [ textfile ]
       5i pid
       ki [ textfile ]
       ki pid
       qi [ textfile ]
       qi pid

       Vi  simulates  the  execution of a MIPS binary in a Plan 9 environment.
       It has two main uses: as a debugger and as a statistics gatherer.  Pro‐
       grams running under vi execute about two hundred times slower than nor‐
       mal—but faster than single stepping under db.  5i, ki, and qi are simi‐
       lar  to vi but interpret ARM, SPARC, and PowerPC binaries.  The follow‐
       ing discussion refers to vi but applies to the others as well.

       Vi will simulate the execution of a named textfile.  It will also  make
       a copy of an existing process with process id pid and simulate its con‐

       As a debugger vi offers more complete information than db(1).   Tracing
       can  be	performed at the level of instructions, system calls, or func‐
       tion calls.  Vi allows  breakpoints  to	be  triggered  when  specified
       addresses in memory are accessed.  A report of instruction counts, load
       delay fills and distribution is produced for each  run.	 Vi  simulates
       the  CPU's  caches  and MMU to assist the optimization of compilers and

       The command interface mirrors the interface to  db;  see	 db(1)	for  a
       detailed	 description.  Data formats and addressing are compatible with
       db except for disassembly: vi offers only MIPS (db -mmipsco)  mnemonics
       for machine instructions.  Ki offers both Plan 9 and Sun SPARC formats.

       Several	extra  commands allow extended tracing and printing of statis‐

	      The  t  command  controls	 tracing.  Zero	 cancels  all  tracing

	      i	     Enable instruction tracing

	      c	     Enable call tracing

	      s	     Enable system call tracing

	      The  i  command prints statistics accumulated by all code run in
	      this session.

	      i	     Print instruction counts and frequency.

	      p	     Print cycle profile.

	      t	     (Vi only) Print TLB and cache statistics.

	      s	     Print memory reference, working set and size statistics.

	      Vi allows breakpoints to be set on any memory  location.	 These
	      breakpoints  monitor when a location is accessed, read, written,
	      or equals a certain value.  For equality the compared  value  is
	      the count (see db(1)) supplied to the command.

       /sys/src/cmd/vi etc.

       nm(1), db(1)

       The code generated by the compilers is well supported, but some unusual
       instructions are unimplemented.	Some Plan 9 system calls such as rfork
       cause simulated traps.  The floating point simulation makes assumptions
       about the interpreting machine's floating point support.	 The  floating
       point conversions performed by vi may cause a loss of precision.

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