Intel® VTune™ Profiler

User Guide

ID 766319
Date 3/22/2024

A newer version of this document is available. Customers should click here to go to the newest version.

Document Table of Contents

Best Practices: Resolve Intel® VTune™ Profiler BSODs, Crashes, and Hangs in Windows* OS


When you use Intel® VTune™ Profiler to profile target applications on Windows systems, if you experience problems with an unresponsive UI or tool crashes, the following suggestions can help you get better clarity on the root causes. Verify if one of these scenarios apply to your environment. If you need further assistance, contact us to get help.

BSOD from Incompatible Intel® VTune™ Profiler Driver or Windows Update

What is happening?

Intel® VTune™ Profiler runs well on a Windows system. After an update to the OS, Intel® VTune™ Profiler crashes for certain analysis types, while others are unavailable.

Why is it happening?

Sometimes, the latest version of Intel® VTune™ Profiler may be one update behind the latest version of Windows OS. The changes contained in the Windows update can then cause an incompatibility with VTune Profiler drivers, particularly with the stack sampling driver for hardware-event based sampling (HEBS) collections. Ideally, you should upgrade to the latest version of Intel® VTune™ Profiler after every time you update Windows OS. This ensures that all relevant drivers are installed.

When you install Intel® VTune™ Profiler on an unsupported version of Windows, the installer does not install incompatible drivers. This disables HEBS and stack collection. However, you may still be able to run hotspots or threading analyses that use user-mode sampling. If you proceed to upgrade Windows to a newer, unsupported version, the user-mode sampling collections attempt to use unavailable drivers and cause Intel® VTune™ Profiler to crash.

Every time you upgrade to the latest version of Windows OS, uninstall your existing version of Intel® VTune™ Profiler and install the latest available version.

BSOD from Driver Conflict

What is happening?

A BSOD occurs due to a driver conflict that affects Intel® VTune™ Profiler drivers.

Why is it happening?

Sometimes, there can be a conflict between Intel® VTune™ Profiler drivers and graphics or third-party drivers. This can likely happen if the Intel® VTune™ Profiler drivers are out of date.

Update all Intel® VTune™ Profiler drivers by installing the latest available version.

VTune Profiler UI turns Unresponsive or 'Hangs'

What is happening?

During symbol resolution stage, Intel® VTune™ Profiler stalls or hangs without any response.

Why is it happening?

Several reasons can cause Intel® VTune™ Profiler to hang during the collection and finalization phase.

PDB File Retrieval

When symbol resolution happens in the finalization process, Intel® VTune™ Profiler may have to retrieve and process large .pdb files. If used within Microsoft Visual Studio, Intel® VTune™ Profiler uses the Visual Studio settings to find symbol files and any additional paths provided in Intel® VTune™ Profiler settings. However, if Intel® VTune™ Profiler uses a symbol server, the resolution waits on updates and therefore slows down. Depending on the size of the .pdb files, this may cause Intel® VTune™ Profiler to stall or hang.

If your analysis requires symbols for system libraries, use a local cache (like the location defined in Visual Studio) instead of a symbol server. Also, remove large .pdb files from the symbol location you provide to Intel® VTune™ Profiler if these files are not required for your analysis.
Synchronization with other Processes

Certain processes like virus scanners or synchronization/back-up utilities can interfere with data collection and finalization in Intel® VTune™ Profiler. Virus scanners can cause problems in the process that Intel® VTune™ Profiler uses for software-based analysis types, such as threading. Some synchronization utilities can cause finalization to fail if the backup happens as Intel® VTune™ Profiler is processing it.

Exclude the pin.exe process from your virus scanning software or disable the scan when running a Intel® VTune™ Profiler collection. Also, pause synchronization and/or back-up utilities until Intel® VTune™ Profiler finalization is complete.

Intel® VTune™ Profiler Crashes during a Collection

What is happening?

Intel® VTune™ Profiler crashes in the middle of a collection operation.

Why is it happening?

A crash can happen if Intel® VTune™ Profiler attempts to instrument or attach to a privileged process or service.

Run Intel® VTune™ Profiler as an administrator. You can then profile processes with elevated privileges. You can also configure Intel® VTune™ Profiler to profile specific modules. See the Advanced section in the WHAT pane for this purpose.

Other Techniques to Enable Data Collection

What is happening?

Intel® VTune™ Profiler does not perform data collection in some specific situations.

Why is it happening?

Certain specific actions can cause data collection to fail. See if one of these suggestions helps to resolve your issue.

Problem Suggestion

User-mode sampling for Threading analysis is too slow or creates too much overhead.

Run Threading analysis with Hardware-Event Based Sampling (HEBS) and context switches enabled. This provides the context switch data necessary to understand thread behavior.

Hotspots analysis is unavailable with HEBS and stack collection enabled.

Disable stack collection. To correlate hotspots with stacks, run a separate hotspots analysis with user-mode sampling enabled.

Intel® VTune™ Profiler hangs or crashes when attaching to a running process.

Run Intel® VTune™ Profiler with the application in paused state. Resume data collection when the application gets to an area of interest.

Data collection crashes when using the Instrumentation and Tracing Technology (ITT) API.

Create a custom analysis. Disable the checkbox to analyze user tasks, events, and counters. Identify if the API is causing the crash.

Get Help

The suggestions described in this topic can help resolve several crashes or stalls. If you are still facing issues, contact us so we may better assist you.