Custom Components

Timemory supports user-specifed components. A custom component must inherit from the static polymorphic base class: tim::component::base. This class provides the integration into the API and requires two types:

  1. component type (i.e. itself)
  2. the data type being stored
// generic static polymorphic base class
template <typename _Tp, typename value_type = int64_t>
struct base;

// create cpu_clock component and use default data type (int64_t)
struct cpu_clock
: public base<cpu_clock>
    // ...

// create cpu_util component and specify data type as pair of 64-bit integers
struct cpu_util
: public base<cpu_util, std::pair<int64_t, int64_t>>
    // ...

// create papi_tuple component and specify data type as an array of long long types
// with the thread_init and thread_finalize policies
template <int... EventTypes>
struct papi_tuple
: public base<
              papi_tuple<EventTypes...>,                    // self type
              std::array<long long, sizeof...(EventTypes)>, // data type
    // ...

Type Traits

Type traits are provided to customize how operations on the data type are handled. For example, adding two wall_clock components together is a simple a += b operation but adding two peak_rss components is better defined as a max operation: a = max(a, b) since += a "peak" memory value could return a result larger than the total amount of memory on the system. Additionally, certain components are not available on certain systems, e.g. components that provide data via the POSIX rusage struct on Windows.

Namespace: tim::trait

Type Trait Description Default Setting
is_available Specify the availablity of the component's implementation std::true_type
record_max Specify that arithmetic operations should use comparisions std::false_type
array_serialization Specify the component stores data as an array std::false_type
external_output_handling Specify the component handles it's own output (if any) std::false_type
requires_prefix Specify the component requires a prefix member variable to be set before start() std::false_type
custom_label_printing Specify the component provides its own labeling for output (typically multiple labels) std::false_type
custom_unit_printing Specify the component provides its own units for output (typically multiple units) std::false_type
custom_laps_printing Specify the component provides its own "lap" printing for output std::false_type
start_priority Specify the component should be started before non-prioritized components std::false_type
stop_priority Specify the component should be stopped before non-prioritized components std::false_type
is_timing_category Designates the width and precision should apply environment-specified timing settings std::false_type
is_memory_category Designates the width and precision should apply environment-specified memory settings std::false_type
uses_timing_units Designates the width and precision should apply environment-specified timing units std::false_type
uses_memory_units Designates the width and precision should apply environment-specified memory units std::false_type
requires_json Specify the component should always output the JSON file format std::false_type
supports_args Specifies whether a components mark_begin and mark_end support a set of arguments std::false_type
supports_custom_record Specifies a type supports changing the record() static function per-instance std::false_type
iterable_measurement Specifies that get() member function returns an iterable type (e.g. vector) std::false_type

tim::trait::array_serialization trait causes invocation of _array variants of label, descript, display_unit, and unit function calls, e.g. label_array(), and implies trait::iterable_measurement

Type Traits Example

template <typename _Tp> struct is_available : std::true_type { };

// on Windows, stack_rss is not available because stack_rss requires POSIX rusage struct
#if defined(_WIN32) || defined(_WIN64)
template <> struct is_available<component::stack_rss> : std::false_type { };

The is_available Trait

tim::trait::is_available is a very important type-trait. Marking a component as not available results in this type being filtered out of the variadic wrapper classes auto_tuple, auto_list, component_tuple, and component_list. This means that with the above example, on Windows, the example_real_stack_type type below will implement the same behavor as the example_real_type type:

using example_real_type       = tim::auto_tuple< wall_clock >;
using example_real_stack_type = tim::auto_tuple< wall_clock, stack_rss >;
// On Windows, above type will filter out stack_rss at compile time

In addition to a performance benefit (no operations on a component that does not provide anything) and a much cleaner code base (significant reduction of #ifdef blocks), this can be used to enable "add-on" features for performance analysis that won't be included in production code, e.g. including cpu_roofline_dp_flops in a specification but not enabling the PAPI backend in a production code.

Custom Component Example

Required Type Description
value_type Alias/typedef Data type used for storage
base_type Alias/typedef Base type specification
precision Constant integer Default output precision
width Constant integer Default output width
format_flags std::ios_base::fmtflags Bitset of formatting flags
unit() numerical value Units of data type
label() string Short-hand description without spaces
description() string Full description of component
display_unit() string String representation of unit()
record() static function How to measure/record data type of component (must return value_type)
get() const const member function Returns the current measurement
get_display() const const member function Returns the current measurement in format desired for reporting
start() member function Defines operation when component recording is started
stop() member function Defines operation when component recording is stopped
struct wall_clock : public base<wall_clock, int64_t>
    // [required] alias to the type of data being recorded is stored
    using value_type = int64_t;

    // [required] alias to base type that implements a lot of the functionality
    using base_type  = base<wall_clock, value_type>;

    // this is specific to this particular component
    using ratio_t    = std::nano;

    // [required] these are formatting guidelines
    static const short                   precision = 3;
    static const short                   width     = 6;
    static const std::ios_base::fmtflags format_flags =
        std::ios_base::fixed | std::ios_base::dec;

    // [required] these handle units conversions and descriptions
    static int64_t     unit() { return units::sec; }
    static std::string label() { return "real"; }
    static std::string description() { return "wall time"; }
    static std::string display_unit() { return "sec"; }

    // [required] this defines how to record a value for the component
    static value_type  record()
        return tim::get_clock_real_now<int64_t, ratio_t>();

    // [required] this defines how to get the relevant data from the component and can
    // return any type
    float get() const
        auto val = (is_transient) ? accum : value;
        return static_cast<double>(val / static_cast<double>(ratio_t::den) *

    // [required] this defines how the value is represented in '<<' and can return any type
    float get_display()() const
        return this->get();

    // [required] this defines what happens when the components is started
    void start()
        value = record();

    // [required] this defines what happens when the components is stopped
    void stop()
        auto tmp = record();
        accum += (tmp - value);
        value = std::move(tmp);