Skip to content

Profiling GPUs using Vulkanlink

Tracy offers great insights into CPU/GPU interactions and Vulkan API usage details. However, information at a finer granularity, especially inside a particular shader dispatch, is missing. To supplement general purpose tools like Tracy, vendor-specific tools can be used.

(TODO: add some pictures for each tool)


Support for RenderDoc can be enabled by configuring cmake with -DIREE_ENABLE_RENDERDOC_PROFILING=ON. When built in to IREE the profiling functionality is available for programmatic use via the iree_hal_device_profiling_begin and iree_hal_device_profiling_end APIs.

When using one of the standard IREE tools (iree-run-module, iree-benchmark-module, etc) the --device_profiling_mode=queue flag can be passed to enable capture around the entire invocation (be careful when benchmarking as the recordings can be quite large!). The default capture file name can be specified with --device_profiling_file=foo.rdc.

Capturing in the RenderDoc UI can be done by specifying the IREE tool or embedding application (iree-run-module, etc) as the launch executable and adding all arguments as normal.

Capturing from the command line can be done using renderdoccmd with the specified file appearing (by default) in the executable directory:

renderdoccmd capture tools/iree-run-module --device_profiling_mode=queue --device_profiling_file=foo.rdc ...
stat tools/foo.rdc
renderdoccmd capture tools/iree-run-module --device_profiling_mode=queue --device_profiling_file=/some/path/foo.rdc ...
stat /some/path/foo.rdc

Android GPUslink

There are multiple GPU vendors for the Android platforms, each offering their own tools. Android GPU Inspector (AGI) provides a cross-vendor solution. See the documentation for more details.

Desktop GPUslink

Vulkan supports both graphics and compute, but most tools in the Vulkan ecosystem focus on graphics. As a result, some Vulkan profiling tools expect commands to correspond to a sequence of frames presented to displays via framebuffers. This means additional steps for IREE and other Vulkan applications that solely rely on headless compute. For graphics-focused tools, we need to wrap IREE's logic inside a dummy rendering loop in order to provide the necessary markers for these tools to perform capture and analysis.


For AMD GPUs, Radeon GPU Profiler (RGP) is the tool to understand fine details of how IREE GPU performs. See the documentation for details.


For NVIDIA GPUs, NVIDIA Nsight Graphics is the tool to understand fine details of how IREE GPU performs. See the documentation for details.