AndroidPerf: A cross-layer profiling system for Android applications

Lei Xue, Chenxiong Qian, Xiapu Luo

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Profiling Android applications (or simply apps) is an important way to discover and locate various problems in apps, such as performance bottleneck, security loopholes, etc. Although many dynamic profiling systems for apps have been proposed, they are limited in dealing with the multiple-layer nature of Android and thus cannot reveal issues due to the underlying platform or poor interactions between different layers. Note that since apps usually run in Dalvik virtual machine (DVM) and each DVM is a process in Android's customized Linux kernel, a simple operation in DVM will lead to many function calls in different layers. In this paper, we propose AndroidPerf, a cross-layer profiling system, including the DVM layer, the system layer, and the kernel layer, for Android apps. It consists of one sub-system that performs cross-layer dynamic taint analysis to collect control flow and data flow information, and another subsystem that conducts instrumentation on all layers for collecting performance information. We have implemented AndroidPerf in 9,125 lines of C/C++ and 1,016 lines of Python scripts along with some modifications to Android's framework. Besides evaluating its functionality and overhead, we have applied AndroidPerf to reveal real performance issues through case studies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2015 IEEE 23rd International Symposium on Quality of Service, IWQoS 2015
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781467371131
Publication statusPublished - 10 Feb 2016
Event23rd IEEE International Symposium on Quality of Service, IWQoS 2015 - Portland, United States
Duration: 15 Jun 201516 Jun 2015


Conference23rd IEEE International Symposium on Quality of Service, IWQoS 2015
Country/TerritoryUnited States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Media Technology
  • Management of Technology and Innovation
  • Computer Networks and Communications

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