DTrace, considered one of the finest features in the Solaris 10 operating system, is being ported to FreeBSD following Sun Microsystems' decision to open source its software.
Developer Devon O'Dell has committed to port Sun's Dynamic Tracing tool, used by systems administrators to debug applications and optimize performance of Solaris 10 servers, to FreeBSD.
DTrace code has been handed to the community as a result of Sun's decision to take Solaris open source, along with its middleware, single sign-on and digital rights management software.
While there has been talk of porting DTrace before, one Sun representative said O'Dell is the first to start work in earnest on the project. Bryan Cantrill, a Sun engineer who helped with internal development of DTrace, said Sun's team is ready to help. Cantrill noted on his blog one potential area of difficulty could be dependencies between DTrace and several "Solaris-specific" system components.
O'Dell has welcomed aid offers, but added he requires some time to figure out what needs to be done.
O'Dell is reported to have said his goal is that all scripts and applications that DTrace utilizes when running in its native Solaris environment should run on FreeBSD without any changes. The project is expected to serve as an alternative to FreeBSD's existing ktrace, which is regarded as relatively limited in scope.®
Cantrill - aka inventor of the Ronco kernel grill and vacuum - was just named one of MIT's top geeks under 35.