Estime: a High-Resolution Virtual Timer for Linux


The Estime library provides high-resolution measurements of virtual time for application programs running on an Intel Pentium SMP architecture and using the Linux kernel. The timer produces reliable measurements on multiprocessors no matter how and where a process is scheduled. Calls to the timer have low overhead, requiring no system calls to obtain the elapsed virtual time. On a Pentium II, reading the Estime timer costs about 80 cycles, compared with about 500 cycles for the system call gettimeofday.

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