DWARF Extensions For Heterogeneous Debugging

Warning

This document describes provisional extensions to DWARF Version 5 [DWARF] to support heterogeneous debugging. It is not currently fully implemented and is subject to change.

Introduction

AMD [AMD] has been working on supporting heterogeneous computing through the AMD Radeon Open Compute Platform (ROCm) [AMD-ROCm]. A heterogeneous computing program can be written in a high level language such as C++ or Fortran with OpenMP pragmas, OpenCL, or HIP (a portable C++ programming environment for heterogeneous computing [HIP]). A heterogeneous compiler and runtime allows a program to execute on multiple devices within the same native process. Devices could include CPUs, GPUs, DSPs, FPGAs, or other special purpose accelerators. Currently HIP programs execute on systems with CPUs and GPUs.

ROCm is fully open sourced and includes contributions to open source projects such as LLVM for compilation [LLVM] and GDB for debugging [GDB], as well as collaboration with other third party projects such as the GCC compiler [GCC] and the Perforce TotalView HPC debugger [Perforce-TotalView].

To support debugging heterogeneous programs several features that are not provided by current DWARF Version 5 [DWARF] have been identified. This document contains a collection of extensions to address providing those features.

The Motivation section describes the issues that are being addressed for heterogeneous computing. That is followed by the Changes Relative to DWARF Version 5 section containing the textual changes for the extensions relative to the DWARF Version 5 standard. Then there is an Examples section that links to the AMD GPU specific usage of the extensions that includes an example. Finally, there is a References section. There are a number of notes included that raise open questions, or provide alternative approaches considered. The extensions seek to be general in nature and backwards compatible with DWARF Version 5. The goal is to be applicable to meeting the needs of any heterogeneous system and not be vendor or architecture specific.

A fundamental aspect of the extensions is that it allows DWARF expression location descriptions as stack elements. The extensions are based on DWARF Version 5 and maintains compatibility with DWARF Version 5. After attempting several alternatives, the current thinking is that such extensions to DWARF Version 5 are the simplest and cleanest ways to support debugging optimized GPU code. It also appears to be generally useful and may be able to address other reported DWARF issues, as well as being helpful in providing better optimization support for non-GPU code.

General feedback on these extensions is sought, together with suggestions on how to clarify, simplify, or organize them. If their is general interest then some or all of these extensions could be submitted as future DWARF proposals.

We are in the process of modifying LLVM and GDB to support these extensions which is providing experience and insights. We plan to upstream the changes to those projects for any final form of the extensions.

The author very much appreciates the input provided so far by many others which has been incorporated into this current version.

Motivation

This document presents a set of backwards compatible extensions to DWARF Version 5 [DWARF] to support heterogeneous debugging.

The remainder of this section provides motivation for each extension in terms of heterogeneous debugging on commercially available AMD GPU hardware (AMDGPU). The goal is to add support to the AMD [AMD] open source Radeon Open Compute Platform (ROCm) [AMD-ROCm] which is an implementation of the industry standard for heterogeneous computing devices defined by the Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) Foundation [HSA]. ROCm includes the LLVM compiler [LLVM] with upstreamed support for AMDGPU [AMDGPU-LLVM]. The goal is to also add the GDB debugger [GDB] with upstreamed support for AMDGPU [AMD-ROCgdb]. In addition, the goal is to work with third parties to enable support for AMDGPU debugging in the GCC compiler [GCC] and the Perforce TotalView HPC debugger [Perforce-TotalView].

However, the extensions are intended to be vendor and architecture neutral. They are believed to apply to other heterogeneous hardware devices including GPUs, DSPs, FPGAs, and other specialized hardware. These collectively include similar characteristics and requirements as AMDGPU devices. Some of the extension can also apply to traditional CPU hardware that supports large vector registers. Compilers can map source languages and extensions that describe large scale parallel execution onto the lanes of the vector registers. This is common in programming languages used in ML and HPC. The extensions also include improved support for optimized code on any architecture. Some of the generalizations may also benefit other issues that have been raised.

The extensions have evolved though collaboration with many individuals and active prototyping within the GDB debugger and LLVM compiler. Input has also been very much appreciated from the developers working on the Perforce TotalView HPC Debugger and GCC compiler.

The AMDGPU has several features that require additional DWARF functionality in order to support optimized code.

AMDGPU optimized code may spill vector registers to non-global address space memory, and this spilling may be done only for lanes that are active on entry to the subprogram. To support this, a location description that can be created as a masked select is required. See DW_OP_LLVM_select_bit_piece.

Since the active lane mask may be held in a register, a way to get the value of a register on entry to a subprogram is required. To support this an operation that returns the caller value of a register as specified by the Call Frame Information (CFI) is required. See DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg and Call Frame Information.

Current DWARF uses an empty expression to indicate an undefined location description. Since the masked select composite location description operation takes more than one location description, it is necessary to have an explicit way to specify an undefined location description. Otherwise it is not possible to specify that a particular one of the input location descriptions is undefined. See DW_OP_LLVM_undefined.

CFI describes restoring callee saved registers that are spilled. Currently CFI only allows a location description that is a register, memory address, or implicit location description. AMDGPU optimized code may spill scalar registers into portions of vector registers. This requires extending CFI to allow any location description. See Call Frame Information.

The vector registers of the AMDGPU are represented as their full wavefront size, meaning the wavefront size times the dword size. This reflects the actual hardware and allows the compiler to generate DWARF for languages that map a thread to the complete wavefront. It also allows more efficient DWARF to be generated to describe the CFI as only a single expression is required for the whole vector register, rather than a separate expression for each lane’s dword of the vector register. It also allows the compiler to produce DWARF that indexes the vector register if it spills scalar registers into portions of a vector registers.

Since DWARF stack value entries have a base type and AMDGPU registers are a vector of dwords, the ability to specify that a base type is a vector is required. See DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size.

If the source language is mapped onto the AMDGPU wavefronts in a SIMT manner, then the variable DWARF location expressions must compute the location for a single lane of the wavefront. Therefore, a DWARF operation is required to denote the current lane, much like DW_OP_push_object_address denotes the current object. The DW_OP_*piece operations only allow literal indices. Therefore, a way to use a computed offset of an arbitrary location description (such as a vector register) is required. See DW_OP_LLVM_push_lane, DW_OP_LLVM_offset, DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst, and DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset.

If the source language is mapped onto the AMDGPU wavefronts in a SIMT manner the compiler can use the AMDGPU execution mask register to control which lanes are active. To describe the conceptual location of non-active lanes a DWARF expression is needed that can compute a per lane PC. For efficiency, this is done for the wavefront as a whole. This expression benefits by having a masked select composite location description operation. This requires an attribute for source location of each lane. The AMDGPU may update the execution mask for whole wavefront operations and so needs an attribute that computes the current active lane mask. See DW_OP_LLVM_select_bit_piece, DW_OP_LLVM_extend, DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc, and DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane.

AMDGPU needs to be able to describe addresses that are in different kinds of memory. Optimized code may need to describe a variable that resides in pieces that are in different kinds of storage which may include parts of registers, memory that is in a mixture of memory kinds, implicit values, or be undefined. DWARF has the concept of segment addresses. However, the segment cannot be specified within a DWARF expression, which is only able to specify the offset portion of a segment address. The segment index is only provided by the entity that specifies the DWARF expression. Therefore, the segment index is a property that can only be put on complete objects, such as a variable. That makes it only suitable for describing an entity (such as variable or subprogram code) that is in a single kind of memory. Therefore, AMDGPU uses the DWARF concept of address spaces. For example, a variable may be allocated in a register that is partially spilled to the call stack which is in the private address space, and partially spilled to the local address space.

DWARF uses the concept of an address in many expression operations but does not define how it relates to address spaces. For example, DW_OP_push_object_address pushes the address of an object. Other contexts implicitly push an address on the stack before evaluating an expression. For example, the DW_AT_use_location attribute of the DW_TAG_ptr_to_member_type. The expression that uses the address needs to do so in a general way and not need to be dependent on the address space of the address. For example, a pointer to member value may want to be applied to an object that may reside in any address space.

The number of registers and the cost of memory operations is much higher for AMDGPU than a typical CPU. The compiler attempts to optimize whole variables and arrays into registers. Currently DWARF only allows DW_OP_push_object_address and related operations to work with a global memory location. To support AMDGPU optimized code it is required to generalize DWARF to allow any location description to be used. This allows registers, or composite location descriptions that may be a mixture of memory, registers, or even implicit values.

DWARF Version 5 does not allow location descriptions to be entries on the DWARF stack. They can only be the final result of the evaluation of a DWARF expression. However, by allowing a location description to be a first-class entry on the DWARF stack it becomes possible to compose expressions containing both values and location descriptions naturally. It allows objects to be located in any kind of memory address space, in registers, be implicit values, be undefined, or a composite of any of these. By extending DWARF carefully, all existing DWARF expressions can retain their current semantic meaning. DWARF has implicit conversions that convert from a value that represents an address in the default address space to a memory location description. This can be extended to allow a default address space memory location description to be implicitly converted back to its address value. This allows all DWARF Version 5 expressions to retain their same meaning, while adding the ability to explicitly create memory location descriptions in non-default address spaces and generalizing the power of composite location descriptions to any kind of location description. See DWARF Operation Expressions.

To allow composition of composite location descriptions, an explicit operation that indicates the end of the definition of a composite location description is required. This can be implied if the end of a DWARF expression is reached, allowing current DWARF expressions to remain legal. See DW_OP_LLVM_piece_end.

The DW_OP_plus and DW_OP_minus can be defined to operate on a memory location description in the default target architecture specific address space and a generic type value to produce an updated memory location description. This allows them to continue to be used to offset an address. To generalize offsetting to any location description, including location descriptions that describe when bytes are in registers, are implicit, or a composite of these, the DW_OP_LLVM_offset, DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst, and DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset offset operations are added. Unlike DW_OP_plus, DW_OP_plus_uconst, and DW_OP_minus arithmetic operations, these do not define that integer overflow causes wrap-around. The offset operations can operate on location storage of any size. For example, implicit location storage could be any number of bits in size. It is simpler to define offsets that exceed the size of the location storage as being an evaluation error, than having to force an implementation to support potentially infinite precision offsets to allow it to correctly track a series of positive and negative offsets that may transiently overflow or underflow, but end up in range. This is simple for the arithmetic operations as they are defined in terms of two’s compliment arithmetic on a base type of a fixed size.

Having the offset operations allows DW_OP_push_object_address to push a location description that may be in a register, or be an implicit value, and the DWARF expression of DW_TAG_ptr_to_member_type can contain them to offset within it. DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset generalizes DWARF to work with bit fields which is not possible in DWARF Version 5.

The DWARF DW_OP_xderef* operations allow a value to be converted into an address of a specified address space which is then read. But it provides no way to create a memory location description for an address in the non-default address space. For example, AMDGPU variables can be allocated in the local address space at a fixed address. It is required to have an operation to create an address in a specific address space that can be used to define the location description of the variable. Defining this operation to produce a location description allows the size of addresses in an address space to be larger than the generic type. See DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address.

If the DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address operation had to produce a value that can be implicitly converted to a memory location description, then it would be limited to the size of the generic type which matches the size of the default address space. Its value would be undefined and likely not match any value in the actual program. By making the result a location description, it allows a consumer great freedom in how it implements it. The implicit conversion back to a value can be limited only to the default address space to maintain compatibility with DWARF Version 5. For other address spaces the producer can use the new operations that explicitly specify the address space.

DW_OP_breg* treats the register as containing an address in the default address space. It is required to be able to specify the address space of the register value. See DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_bregx.

Similarly, DW_OP_implicit_pointer treats its implicit pointer value as being in the default address space. It is required to be able to specify the address space of the pointer value. See DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer.

Almost all uses of addresses in DWARF are limited to defining location descriptions, or to be dereferenced to read memory. The exception is DW_CFA_val_offset which uses the address to set the value of a register. By defining the CFA DWARF expression as being a memory location description, it can maintain what address space it is, and that can be used to convert the offset address back to an address in that address space. See Call Frame Information.

This approach allows all existing DWARF to have the identical semantics. It allows the compiler to explicitly specify the address space it is using. For example, a compiler could choose to access private memory in a swizzled manner when mapping a source language to a wavefront in a SIMT manner, or to access it in an unswizzled manner if mapping the same language with the wavefront being the thread. It also allows the compiler to mix the address space it uses to access private memory. For example, for SIMT it can still spill entire vector registers in an unswizzled manner, while using a swizzled private memory for SIMT variable access. This approach allows memory location descriptions for different address spaces to be combined using the regular DW_OP_*piece operations.

Location descriptions are an abstraction of storage, they give freedom to the consumer on how to implement them. They allow the address space to encode lane information so they can be used to read memory with only the memory description and no extra arguments. The same set of operations can operate on locations independent of their kind of storage. The DW_OP_deref* therefore can be used on any storage kind. DW_OP_xderef* is unnecessary, except to become a more compact way to convert a non-default address space address followed by dereferencing it.

In DWARF Version 5 a location description is defined as a single location description or a location list. A location list is defined as either effectively an undefined location description or as one or more single location descriptions to describe an object with multiple places. The DW_OP_push_object_address and DW_OP_call* operations can put a location description on the stack. Furthermore, debugger information entry attributes such as DW_AT_data_member_location, DW_AT_use_location, and DW_AT_vtable_elem_location are defined as pushing a location description on the expression stack before evaluating the expression. However, DWARF Version 5 only allows the stack to contain values and so only a single memory address can be on the stack which makes these incapable of handling location descriptions with multiple places, or places other than memory. Since these extensions allow the stack to contain location descriptions, the operations are generalized to support location descriptions that can have multiple places. This is backwards compatible with DWARF Version 5 and allows objects with multiple places to be supported. For example, the expression that describes how to access the field of an object can be evaluated with a location description that has multiple places and will result in a location description with multiple places as expected. With this change, the separate DWARF Version 5 sections that described DWARF expressions and location lists have been unified into a single section that describes DWARF expressions in general. This unification seems to be a natural consequence and a necessity of allowing location descriptions to be part of the evaluation stack.

For those familiar with the definition of location descriptions in DWARF Version 5, the definitions in these extensions are presented differently, but does in fact define the same concept with the same fundamental semantics. However, it does so in a way that allows the concept to extend to support address spaces, bit addressing, the ability for composite location descriptions to be composed of any kind of location description, and the ability to support objects located at multiple places. Collectively these changes expand the set of processors that can be supported and improves support for optimized code.

Several approaches were considered, and the one presented appears to be the cleanest and offers the greatest improvement of DWARF’s ability to support optimized code. Examining the GDB debugger and LLVM compiler, it appears only to require modest changes as they both already have to support general use of location descriptions. It is anticipated that will also be the case for other debuggers and compilers.

As an experiment, GDB was modified to evaluate DWARF Version 5 expressions with location descriptions as stack entries and implicit conversions. All GDB tests have passed, except one that turned out to be an invalid test by DWARF Version 5 rules. The code in GDB actually became simpler as all evaluation was on the stack and there was no longer a need to maintain a separate structure for the location description result. This gives confidence of the backwards compatibility.

Since the AMDGPU supports languages such as OpenCL [OpenCL], there is a need to define source language address classes so they can be used in a consistent way by consumers. It would also be desirable to add support for using them in defining language types rather than the current target architecture specific address spaces. See Segmented Addresses.

A DW_AT_LLVM_augmentation attribute is added to a compilation unit debugger information entry to indicate that there is additional target architecture specific information in the debugging information entries of that compilation unit. This allows a consumer to know what extensions are present in the debugger information entries as is possible with the augmentation string of other sections. The format that should be used for the augmentation string in the lookup by name table and CFI Common Information Entry is also recommended to allow a consumer to parse the string when it contains information from multiple vendors.

The AMDGPU supports programming languages that include online compilation where the source text may be created at runtime. Therefore, a way to embed the source text in the debug information is required. For example, the OpenCL language runtime supports online compilation. See Line Number Information.

Support to allow MD5 checksums to be optionally present in the line table is added. This allows linking together compilation units where some have MD5 checksums and some do not. In DWARF Version 5 the file timestamp and file size can be optional, but if the MD5 checksum is present it must be valid for all files. See Line Number Information.

Support is added for the HIP programming language [HIP] which is supported by the AMDGPU. See Unit Entities.

The following sections provide the definitions for the additional operations, as well as clarifying how existing expression operations, CFI operations, and attributes behave with respect to generalized location descriptions that support address spaces and location descriptions that support multiple places. It has been defined such that it is backwards compatible with DWARF Version 5. The definitions are intended to fully define well-formed DWARF in a consistent style based on the DWARF Version 5 specification. Non-normative text is shown in italics.

The names for the new operations, attributes, and constants include “LLVM” and are encoded with vendor specific codes so these extensions can be implemented as an LLVM vendor extension to DWARF Version 5. If accepted these names would not include the “LLVM” and would not use encodings in the vendor range.

The extensions are described in Changes Relative to DWARF Version 5 and are organized to follow the section ordering of DWARF Version 5. It includes notes to indicate the corresponding DWARF Version 5 sections to which they pertain. Other notes describe additional changes that may be worth considering, and to raise questions.

Changes Relative to DWARF Version 5

General Description

Attribute Types

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 2.2 and Table 2.2.

The following table provides the additional attributes. See Debugging Information Entry Attributes.

Attribute names
Attribute Usage
DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane SIMD or SIMT active lanes
DW_AT_LLVM_augmentation Compilation unit augmentation string
DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc SIMD or SIMT lane program location
DW_AT_LLVM_lanes SIMD or SIMT thread lane count
DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size Base type vector size

DWARF Expressions

Note

This section, and its nested sections, replaces DWARF Version 5 section 2.5 and section 2.6. The new DWARF expression operation extensions are defined as well as clarifying the extensions to already existing DWARF Version 5 operations. It is based on the text of the existing DWARF Version 5 standard.

DWARF expressions describe how to compute a value or specify a location.

The evaluation of a DWARF expression can provide the location of an object, the value of an array bound, the length of a dynamic string, the desired value itself, and so on.

If the evaluation of a DWARF expression does not encounter an error, then it can either result in a value (see DWARF Expression Value) or a location description (see DWARF Location Description). When a DWARF expression is evaluated, it may be specified whether a value or location description is required as the result kind.

If a result kind is specified, and the result of the evaluation does not match the specified result kind, then the implicit conversions described in Memory Location Description Operations are performed if valid. Otherwise, the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

If the evaluation of a DWARF expression encounters an evaluation error, then the result is an evaluation error.

Note

Decided to define the concept of an evaluation error. An alternative is to introduce an undefined value base type in a similar way to location descriptions having an undefined location description. Then operations that encounter an evaluation error can return the undefined location description or value with an undefined base type.

All operations that act on values would return an undefined entity if given an undefined value. The expression would then always evaluate to completion, and can be tested to determine if it is an undefined entity.

However, this would add considerable additional complexity and does not match that GDB throws an exception when these evaluation errors occur.

If a DWARF expression is ill-formed, then the result is undefined.

The following sections detail the rules for when a DWARF expression is ill-formed or results in an evaluation error.

A DWARF expression can either be encoded as a operation expression (see DWARF Operation Expressions), or as a location list expression (see DWARF Location List Expressions).

DWARF Expression Evaluation Context

A DWARF expression is evaluated in a context that can include a number of context elements. If multiple context elements are specified then they must be self consistent or the result of the evaluation is undefined. The context elements that can be specified are:

A current result kind

The kind of result required by the DWARF expression evaluation. If specified it can be a location description or a value.

A current thread

The target architecture thread identifier of the source program thread of execution for which a user presented expression is currently being evaluated.

It is required for operations that are related to target architecture threads.

For example, the DW_OP_form_tls_address operation and DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address operation when given an address space that is thread specific.

A current lane

The target architecture lane identifier of the source program thread of execution for which a user presented expression is currently being evaluated. This applies to languages that are implemented using a SIMD or SIMT execution model.

It is required for operations that are related to target architecture lanes.

For example, the DW_OP_LLVM_push_lane operation and DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address operation when given an address space that is lane specific.

If specified, it must be consistent with any specified current thread and current target architecture. It is consistent with a thread if it identifies a lane of the thread. It is consistent with a target architecture if it is a valid lane identifier of the target architecture. Otherwise the result is undefined.

A current call frame

The target architecture call frame identifier. It identifies a call frame that corresponds to an active invocation of a subprogram in the current thread. It is identified by its address on the call stack. The address is referred to as the Canonical Frame Address (CFA). The call frame information is used to determine the CFA for the call frames of the current thread’s call stack (see Call Frame Information).

It is required for operations that specify target architecture registers to support virtual unwinding of the call stack.

For example, the DW_OP_*reg* operations.

If specified, it must be an active call frame in the current thread. If the current lane is specified, then that lane must have been active on entry to the call frame (see the DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc attribute). Otherwise the result is undefined.

If it is the currently executing call frame, then it is termed the top call frame.

A current program location

The target architecture program location corresponding to the current call frame of the current thread.

The program location of the top call frame is the target architecture program counter for the current thread. The call frame information is used to obtain the value of the return address register to determine the program location of the other call frames (see Call Frame Information).

It is required for the evaluation of location list expressions to select amongst multiple program location ranges. It is required for operations that specify target architecture registers to support virtual unwinding of the call stack (see Call Frame Information).

If specified:

  • If the current lane is not specified:
    • If the current call frame is the top call frame, it must be the current target architecture program location.
    • If the current call frame F is not the top call frame, it must be the program location associated with the call site in the current caller frame F that invoked the callee frame.
  • If the current lane is specified and the architecture program location LPC computed by the DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc attribute for the current lane is not the undefined location description (indicating the lane was not active on entry to the call frame), it must be LPC.
  • Otherwise the result is undefined.

A current compilation unit

The compilation unit debug information entry that contains the DWARF expression being evaluated.

It is required for operations that reference debug information associated with the same compilation unit, including indicating if such references use the 32-bit or 64-bit DWARF format. It can also provide the default address space address size if no current target architecture is specified.

For example, the DW_OP_constx and DW_OP_addrx operations.

Note that this compilation unit may not be the same as the compilation unit determined from the loaded code object corresponding to the current program location. For example, the evaluation of the expression E associated with a ``DW_AT_location`` attribute of the debug information entry operand of the ``DW_OP_call*`` operations is evaluated with the compilation unit that contains E and not the one that contains the ``DW_OP_call*`` operation expression.

A current target architecture

The target architecture.

It is required for operations that specify target architecture specific entities.

For example, target architecture specific entities include DWARF register identifiers, DWARF lane identifiers, DWARF address space identifiers, the default address space, and the address space address sizes.

If specified:

  • If the current thread is specified, then the current target architecture must be the same as the target architecture of the current thread.
  • If the current compilation unit is specified, then the current target architecture default address space address size must be the same as he address_size field in the header of the current compilation unit and any associated entry in the .debug_aranges section.
  • If the current program location is specified, then the current target architecture must be the same as the target architecture of any line number information entry (see Line Number Information) corresponding to the current program location.
  • If the current program location is specified, then the current target architecture default address space address size must be the same as he address_size field in the header of any entry corresponding to the current program location in the .debug_addr, .debug_line, .debug_rnglists, .debug_rnglists.dwo, .debug_loclists, and .debug_loclists.dwo sections.
  • Otherwise the result is undefined.

A current object

The location description of a program object.

It is required for the DW_OP_push_object_address operation.

For example, the DW_AT_data_location attribute on type debug information entries specifies the the program object corresponding to a runtime descriptor as the current object when it evaluates its associated expression.

The result is undefined if the location descriptor is invalid (see DWARF Location Description).

An initial stack

This is a list of values or location descriptions that will be pushed on the operation expression evaluation stack in the order provided before evaluation of an operation expression starts.

Some debugger information entries have attributes that evaluate their DWARF expression value with initial stack entries. In all other cases the initial stack is empty.

The result is undefined if any location descriptors are invalid (see DWARF Location Description).

If the evaluation requires a context element that is not specified, then the result of the evaluation is an error.

A DWARF expression for the location description may be able to be evaluated without a thread, lane, call frame, program location, or architecture context. For example, the location of a global variable may be able to be evaluated without such context. If the expression evaluates with an error then it may indicate the variable has been optimized and so requires more context.

The DWARF expression for call frame information (see :ref:`amdgpu-dwarf-call-frame-information`) operations are restricted to those that do not require the compilation unit context to be specified.

The DWARF is ill-formed if all the address_size fields in the headers of all the entries in the .debug_info, .debug_addr, .debug_line, .debug_rnglists, .debug_rnglists.dwo, .debug_loclists, and .debug_loclists.dwo sections corresponding to any given program location do not match.

DWARF Expression Value

A value has a type and a literal value. It can represent a literal value of any supported base type of the target architecture. The base type specifies the size and encoding of the literal value.

Note

It may be desirable to add an implicit pointer base type encoding. It would be used for the type of the value that is produced when the DW_OP_deref* operation retrieves the full contents of an implicit pointer location storage created by the DW_OP_implicit_pointer or DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operations. The literal value would record the debugging information entry and byte displacement specified by the associated DW_OP_implicit_pointer or DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operations.

There is a distinguished base type termed the generic type, which is an integral type that has the size of an address in the target architecture default address space and unspecified signedness.

The generic type is the same as the unspecified type used for stack operations defined in DWARF Version 4 and before.

An integral type is a base type that has an encoding of DW_ATE_signed, DW_ATE_signed_char, DW_ATE_unsigned, DW_ATE_unsigned_char, DW_ATE_boolean, or any target architecture defined integral encoding in the inclusive range DW_ATE_lo_user to DW_ATE_hi_user.

Note

It is unclear if DW_ATE_address is an integral type. GDB does not seem to consider it as integral.

DWARF Location Description

Debugging information must provide consumers a way to find the location of program variables, determine the bounds of dynamic arrays and strings, and possibly to find the base address of a subprogram’s call frame or the return address of a subprogram. Furthermore, to meet the needs of recent computer architectures and optimization techniques, debugging information must be able to describe the location of an object whose location changes over the object’s lifetime, and may reside at multiple locations simultaneously during parts of an object’s lifetime.

Information about the location of program objects is provided by location descriptions.

Location descriptions can consist of one or more single location descriptions.

A single location description specifies the location storage that holds a program object and a position within the location storage where the program object starts. The position within the location storage is expressed as a bit offset relative to the start of the location storage.

A location storage is a linear stream of bits that can hold values. Each location storage has a size in bits and can be accessed using a zero-based bit offset. The ordering of bits within a location storage uses the bit numbering and direction conventions that are appropriate to the current language on the target architecture.

There are five kinds of location storage:

memory location storage
Corresponds to the target architecture memory address spaces.
register location storage
Corresponds to the target architecture registers.
implicit location storage
Corresponds to fixed values that can only be read.
undefined location storage
Indicates no value is available and therefore cannot be read or written.
composite location storage
Allows a mixture of these where some bits come from one location storage and some from another location storage, or from disjoint parts of the same location storage.

Note

It may be better to add an implicit pointer location storage kind used by the DW_OP_implicit_pointer and DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operations. It would specify the debugger information entry and byte offset provided by the operations.

Location descriptions are a language independent representation of addressing rules. They are created using DWARF operation expressions of arbitrary complexity. They can be the result of evaluating a debugger information entry attribute that specifies an operation expression. In this usage they can describe the location of an object as long as its lifetime is either static or the same as the lexical block (see DWARF Version 5 section 3.5) that owns it, and it does not move during its lifetime. They can be the result of evaluating a debugger information entry attribute that specifies a location list expression. In this usage they can describe the location of an object that has a limited lifetime, changes its location during its lifetime, or has multiple locations over part or all of its lifetime.

If a location description has more than one single location description, the DWARF expression is ill-formed if the object value held in each single location description’s position within the associated location storage is not the same value, except for the parts of the value that are uninitialized.

A location description that has more than one single location description can only be created by a location list expression that has overlapping program location ranges, or certain expression operations that act on a location description that has more than one single location description. There are no operation expression operations that can directly create a location description with more than one single location description.

A location description with more than one single location description can be used to describe objects that reside in more than one piece of storage at the same time. An object may have more than one location as a result of optimization. For example, a value that is only read may be promoted from memory to a register for some region of code, but later code may revert to reading the value from memory as the register may be used for other purposes. For the code region where the value is in a register, any change to the object value must be made in both the register and the memory so both regions of code will read the updated value.

A consumer of a location description with more than one single location description can read the object’s value from any of the single location descriptions (since they all refer to location storage that has the same value), but must write any changed value to all the single location descriptions.

The evaluation of an expression may require context elements to create a location description. If such a location description is accessed, the storage it denotes is that associated with the context element values specified when the location description was created, which may differ from the context at the time it is accessed.

For example, creating a register location description requires the thread context: the location storage is for the specified register of that thread. Creating a memory location description for an address space may required a thread and a lane context: the location storage is the memory associated with that thread and lane.

If any of the context elements required to create a location description change, the location description becomes invalid and accessing it is undefined.

Examples of context that can invalidate a location description are:

  • The thread context is required and execution causes the thread to terminate.
  • The call frame context is required and further execution causes the call frame to return to the calling frame.
  • The program location is required and further execution of the thread occurs. That could change the location list entry or call frame information entry that applies.
  • An operation uses call frame information:
    • Any of the frames used in the virtual call frame unwinding return.
    • The top call frame is used, the program location is used to select the call frame information entry, and further execution of the thread occurs.

A DWARF expression can be used to compute a location description for an object. A subsequent DWARF expression evaluation can be given the object location description as the object context or initial stack context to compute a component of the object. The final result is undefined if the object location description becomes invalid between the two expression evaluations.

A change of a thread’s program location may not make a location description invalid, yet may still render it as no longer meaningful. Accessing such a location description, or using it as the object context or initial stack context of an expression evaluation, may produce an undefined result.

For example, a location description may specify a register that no longer holds the intended program object after a program location change. One way to avoid such problems is to recompute location descriptions associated with threads when their program locations change.

DWARF Operation Expressions

An operation expression is comprised of a stream of operations, each consisting of an opcode followed by zero or more operands. The number of operands is implied by the opcode.

Operations represent a postfix operation on a simple stack machine. Each stack entry can hold either a value or a location description. Operations can act on entries on the stack, including adding entries and removing entries. If the kind of a stack entry does not match the kind required by the operation and is not implicitly convertible to the required kind (see Memory Location Description Operations), then the DWARF operation expression is ill-formed.

Evaluation of an operation expression starts with an empty stack on which the entries from the initial stack provided by the context are pushed in the order provided. Then the operations are evaluated, starting with the first operation of the stream. Evaluation continues until either an operation has an evaluation error, or until one past the last operation of the stream is reached.

The result of the evaluation is:

  • If an operation has an evaluation error, or an operation evaluates an expression that has an evaluation error, then the result is an evaluation error.

  • If the current result kind specifies a location description, then:

    • If the stack is empty, the result is a location description with one undefined location description.

      This rule is for backwards compatibility with DWARF Version 5 which has no explicit operation to create an undefined location description, and uses an empty operation expression for this purpose.

    • If the top stack entry is a location description, or can be converted to one (see Memory Location Description Operations), then the result is that, possibly converted, location description. Any other entries on the stack are discarded.

    • Otherwise the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

      Note

      Could define this case as returning an implicit location description as if the DW_OP_implicit operation is performed.

  • If the current result kind specifies a value, then:

    • If the top stack entry is a value, or can be converted to one (see Memory Location Description Operations), then the result is that, possibly converted, value. Any other entries on the stack are discarded.
    • Otherwise the DWARF expression is ill-formed.
  • If the current result kind is not specified, then:

    • If the stack is empty, the result is a location description with one undefined location description.

      This rule is for backwards compatibility with DWARF Version 5 which has no explicit operation to create an undefined location description, and uses an empty operation expression for this purpose.

      Note

      This rule is consistent with the rule above for when a location description is requested. However, GDB appears to report this as an error and no GDB tests appear to cause an empty stack for this case.

    • Otherwise, the top stack entry is returned. Any other entries on the stack are discarded.

An operation expression is encoded as a byte block with some form of prefix that specifies the byte count. It can be used:

  • as the value of a debugging information entry attribute that is encoded using class exprloc (see DWARF Version 5 section 7.5.5),
  • as the operand to certain operation expression operations,
  • as the operand to certain call frame information operations (see Call Frame Information),
  • and in location list entries (see DWARF Location List Expressions).
Stack Operations

The following operations manipulate the DWARF stack. Operations that index the stack assume that the top of the stack (most recently added entry) has index 0. They allow the stack entries to be either a value or location description.

If any stack entry accessed by a stack operation is an incomplete composite location description (see Composite Location Description Operations), then the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

Note

These operations now support stack entries that are values and location descriptions.

Note

If it is desired to also make them work with incomplete composite location descriptions, then would need to define that the composite location storage specified by the incomplete composite location description is also replicated when a copy is pushed. This ensures that each copy of the incomplete composite location description can update the composite location storage they specify independently.

  1. DW_OP_dup

    DW_OP_dup duplicates the stack entry at the top of the stack.

  2. DW_OP_drop

    DW_OP_drop pops the stack entry at the top of the stack and discards it.

  3. DW_OP_pick

    DW_OP_pick has a single unsigned 1-byte operand that represents an index I. A copy of the stack entry with index I is pushed onto the stack.

  4. DW_OP_over

    DW_OP_over pushes a copy of the entry with index 1.

    This is equivalent to a ``DW_OP_pick 1`` operation.

  5. DW_OP_swap

    DW_OP_swap swaps the top two stack entries. The entry at the top of the stack becomes the second stack entry, and the second stack entry becomes the top of the stack.

  6. DW_OP_rot

    DW_OP_rot rotates the first three stack entries. The entry at the top of the stack becomes the third stack entry, the second entry becomes the top of the stack, and the third entry becomes the second entry.

Control Flow Operations

The following operations provide simple control of the flow of a DWARF operation expression.

  1. DW_OP_nop

    DW_OP_nop is a place holder. It has no effect on the DWARF stack entries.

  2. DW_OP_le, DW_OP_ge, DW_OP_eq, DW_OP_lt, DW_OP_gt, DW_OP_ne

    Note

    The same as in DWARF Version 5 section 2.5.1.5.

  3. DW_OP_skip

    DW_OP_skip is an unconditional branch. Its single operand is a 2-byte signed integer constant. The 2-byte constant is the number of bytes of the DWARF expression to skip forward or backward from the current operation, beginning after the 2-byte constant.

    If the updated position is at one past the end of the last operation, then the operation expression evaluation is complete.

    Otherwise, the DWARF expression is ill-formed if the updated operation position is not in the range of the first to last operation inclusive, or not at the start of an operation.

  4. DW_OP_bra

    DW_OP_bra is a conditional branch. Its single operand is a 2-byte signed integer constant. This operation pops the top of stack. If the value popped is not the constant 0, the 2-byte constant operand is the number of bytes of the DWARF operation expression to skip forward or backward from the current operation, beginning after the 2-byte constant.

    If the updated position is at one past the end of the last operation, then the operation expression evaluation is complete.

    Otherwise, the DWARF expression is ill-formed if the updated operation position is not in the range of the first to last operation inclusive, or not at the start of an operation.

  5. DW_OP_call2, DW_OP_call4, DW_OP_call_ref

    DW_OP_call2, DW_OP_call4, and DW_OP_call_ref perform DWARF procedure calls during evaluation of a DWARF expression.

    DW_OP_call2 and DW_OP_call4, have one operand that is, respectively, a 2-byte or 4-byte unsigned offset DR that represents the byte offset of a debugging information entry D relative to the beginning of the current compilation unit.

    DW_OP_call_ref has one operand that is a 4-byte unsigned value in the 32-bit DWARF format, or an 8-byte unsigned value in the 64-bit DWARF format, that represents the byte offset DR of a debugging information entry D relative to the beginning of the .debug_info section that contains the current compilation unit. D may not be in the current compilation unit.

    Operand interpretation of DW_OP_call2, DW_OP_call4, and DW_OP_call_ref is exactly like that for DW_FORM_ref2, ``DW_FORM_ref4``*, and DW_FORM_ref_addr, respectively.

    The call operation is evaluated by:

    • If D has a DW_AT_location attribute that is encoded as a exprloc that specifies an operation expression E, then execution of the current operation expression continues from the first operation of E. Execution continues until one past the last operation of E is reached, at which point execution continues with the operation following the call operation. The operations of E are evaluated with the same current context, except current compilation unit is the one that contains D and the stack is the same as that being used by the call operation. After the call operation has been evaluated, the stack is therefore as it is left by the evaluation of the operations of E. Since E is evaluated on the same stack as the call operation, E can use, and/or remove entries already on the stack, and can add new entries to the stack.

      Values on the stack at the time of the call may be used as parameters by the called expression and values left on the stack by the called expression may be used as return values by prior agreement between the calling and called expressions.

    • If D has a DW_AT_location attribute that is encoded as a loclist or loclistsptr, then the specified location list expression E is evaluated. The evaluation of E uses the current context, except the result kind is a location description, the compilation unit is the one that contains D, and the initial stack is empty. The location description result is pushed on the stack.

      Note

      This rule avoids having to define how to execute a matched location list entry operation expression on the same stack as the call when there are multiple matches. But it allows the call to obtain the location description for a variable or formal parameter which may use a location list expression.

      An alternative is to treat the case when D has a DW_AT_location attribute that is encoded as a loclist or loclistsptr, and the specified location list expression E’ matches a single location list entry with operation expression E, the same as the exprloc case and evaluate on the same stack.

      But this is not attractive as if the attribute is for a variable that happens to end with a non-singleton stack, it will not simply put a location description on the stack. Presumably the intent of using DW_OP_call* on a variable or formal parameter debugger information entry is to push just one location description on the stack. That location description may have more than one single location description.

      The previous rule for exprloc also has the same problem as normally a variable or formal parameter location expression may leave multiple entries on the stack and only return the top entry.

      GDB implements DW_OP_call* by always executing E on the same stack. If the location list has multiple matching entries, it simply picks the first one and ignores the rest. This seems fundamentally at odds with the desire to supporting multiple places for variables.

      So, it feels like DW_OP_call* should both support pushing a location description on the stack for a variable or formal parameter, and also support being able to execute an operation expression on the same stack. Being able to specify a different operation expression for different program locations seems a desirable feature to retain.

      A solution to that is to have a distinct DW_AT_LLVM_proc attribute for the DW_TAG_dwarf_procedure debugging information entry. Then the DW_AT_location attribute expression is always executed separately and pushes a location description (that may have multiple single location descriptions), and the DW_AT_LLVM_proc attribute expression is always executed on the same stack and can leave anything on the stack.

      The DW_AT_LLVM_proc attribute could have the new classes exprproc, loclistproc, and loclistsptrproc to indicate that the expression is executed on the same stack. exprproc is the same encoding as exprloc. loclistproc and loclistsptrproc are the same encoding as their non-proc counterparts, except the DWARF is ill-formed if the location list does not match exactly one location list entry and a default entry is required. These forms indicate explicitly that the matched single operation expression must be executed on the same stack. This is better than ad hoc special rules for loclistproc and loclistsptrproc which are currently clearly defined to always return a location description. The producer then explicitly indicates the intent through the attribute classes.

      Such a change would be a breaking change for how GDB implements DW_OP_call*. However, are the breaking cases actually occurring in practice? GDB could implement the current approach for DWARF Version 5, and the new semantics for DWARF Version 6 which has been done for some other features.

      Another option is to limit the execution to be on the same stack only to the evaluation of an expression E that is the value of a DW_AT_location attribute of a DW_TAG_dwarf_procedure debugging information entry. The DWARF would be ill-formed if E is a location list expression that does not match exactly one location list entry. In all other cases the evaluation of an expression E that is the value of a DW_AT_location attribute would evaluate E with the current context, except the result kind is a location description, the compilation unit is the one that contains D, and the initial stack is empty. The location description result is pushed on the stack.

    • If D has a DW_AT_const_value attribute with a value V, then it is as if a DW_OP_implicit_value V operation was executed.

      This allows a call operation to be used to compute the location description for any variable or formal parameter regardless of whether the producer has optimized it to a constant. This is consistent with the ``DW_OP_implicit_pointer`` operation.

      Note

      Alternatively, could deprecate using DW_AT_const_value for DW_TAG_variable and DW_TAG_formal_parameter debugger information entries that are constants and instead use DW_AT_location with an operation expression that results in a location description with one implicit location description. Then this rule would not be required.

    • Otherwise, there is no effect and no changes are made to the stack.

      Note

      In DWARF Version 5, if D does not have a DW_AT_location then DW_OP_call* is defined to have no effect. It is unclear that this is the right definition as a producer should be able to rely on using DW_OP_call* to get a location description for any non-DW_TAG_dwarf_procedure debugging information entries. Also, the producer should not be creating DWARF with DW_OP_call* to a DW_TAG_dwarf_procedure that does not have a DW_AT_location attribute. So, should this case be defined as an ill-formed DWARF expression?

    The DW_TAG_dwarf_procedure debugging information entry can be used to define DWARF procedures that can be called.

Value Operations

This section describes the operations that push values on the stack.

Each value stack entry has a type and a literal value and can represent a literal value of any supported base type of the target architecture. The base type specifies the size and encoding of the literal value.

Instead of a base type, value stack entries can have a distinguished generic type, which is an integral type that has the size of an address in the target architecture default address space and unspecified signedness.

The generic type is the same as the unspecified type used for stack operations defined in DWARF Version 4 and before.

An integral type is a base type that has an encoding of DW_ATE_signed, DW_ATE_signed_char, DW_ATE_unsigned, DW_ATE_unsigned_char, DW_ATE_boolean, or any target architecture defined integral encoding in the inclusive range DW_ATE_lo_user to DW_ATE_hi_user.

Note

Unclear if DW_ATE_address is an integral type. GDB does not seem to consider it as integral.

Literal Operations

The following operations all push a literal value onto the DWARF stack.

Operations other than DW_OP_const_type push a value V with the generic type. If V is larger than the generic type, then V is truncated to the generic type size and the low-order bits used.

  1. DW_OP_lit0, DW_OP_lit1, …, DW_OP_lit31

    DW_OP_lit<N> operations encode an unsigned literal value N from 0 through 31, inclusive. They push the value N with the generic type.

  2. DW_OP_const1u, DW_OP_const2u, DW_OP_const4u, DW_OP_const8u

    DW_OP_const<N>u operations have a single operand that is a 1, 2, 4, or 8-byte unsigned integer constant U, respectively. They push the value U with the generic type.

  3. DW_OP_const1s, DW_OP_const2s, DW_OP_const4s, DW_OP_const8s

    DW_OP_const<N>s operations have a single operand that is a 1, 2, 4, or 8-byte signed integer constant S, respectively. They push the value S with the generic type.

  4. DW_OP_constu

    DW_OP_constu has a single unsigned LEB128 integer operand N. It pushes the value N with the generic type.

  5. DW_OP_consts

    DW_OP_consts has a single signed LEB128 integer operand N. It pushes the value N with the generic type.

  6. DW_OP_constx

    DW_OP_constx has a single unsigned LEB128 integer operand that represents a zero-based index into the .debug_addr section relative to the value of the DW_AT_addr_base attribute of the associated compilation unit. The value N in the .debug_addr section has the size of the generic type. It pushes the value N with the generic type.

    The DW_OP_constx operation is provided for constants that require link-time relocation but should not be interpreted by the consumer as a relocatable address (for example, offsets to thread-local storage).

  1. DW_OP_const_type

    DW_OP_const_type has three operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer DR that represents the byte offset of a debugging information entry D relative to the beginning of the current compilation unit, that provides the type T of the constant value. The second is a 1-byte unsigned integral constant S. The third is a block of bytes B, with a length equal to S.

    TS is the bit size of the type T. The least significant TS bits of B are interpreted as a value V of the type D. It pushes the value V with the type D.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if D is not a DW_TAG_base_type debugging information entry in the current compilation unit, or if TS divided by 8 (the byte size) and rounded up to a whole number is not equal to S.

    While the size of the byte block B can be inferred from the type D definition, it is encoded explicitly into the operation so that the operation can be parsed easily without reference to the .debug_info section.

  2. DW_OP_LLVM_push_lane New

    DW_OP_LLVM_push_lane pushes the target architecture lane identifier of the current lane as a value with the generic type.

    For languages that are implemented using a SIMD or SIMT execution model, this is the lane number that corresponds to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused.

Arithmetic and Logical Operations

Note

This section is the same as DWARF Version 5 section 2.5.1.4.

Type Conversion Operations

Note

This section is the same as DWARF Version 5 section 2.5.1.6.

Special Value Operations

There are these special value operations currently defined:

  1. DW_OP_regval_type

    DW_OP_regval_type has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a register number R. The second is an unsigned LEB128 integer DR that represents the byte offset of a debugging information entry D relative to the beginning of the current compilation unit, that provides the type T of the register value.

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_regx R; DW_OP_deref_type DR.

    Note

    Should DWARF allow the type T to be a larger size than the size of the register R? Restricting a larger bit size avoids any issue of conversion as the, possibly truncated, bit contents of the register is simply interpreted as a value of T. If a conversion is wanted it can be done explicitly using a DW_OP_convert operation.

    GDB has a per register hook that allows a target specific conversion on a register by register basis. It defaults to truncation of bigger registers. Removing use of the target hook does not cause any test failures in common architectures. If the compiler for a target architecture did want some form of conversion, including a larger result type, it could always explicitly used the DW_OP_convert operation.

    If T is a larger type than the register size, then the default GDB register hook reads bytes from the next register (or reads out of bounds for the last register!). Removing use of the target hook does not cause any test failures in common architectures (except an illegal hand written assembly test). If a target architecture requires this behavior, these extensions allow a composite location description to be used to combine multiple registers.

  2. DW_OP_deref

    S is the bit size of the generic type divided by 8 (the byte size) and rounded up to a whole number. DR is the offset of a hypothetical debug information entry D in the current compilation unit for a base type of the generic type.

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_deref_type S, DR.

  3. DW_OP_deref_size

    DW_OP_deref_size has a single 1-byte unsigned integral constant that represents a byte result size S.

    TS is the smaller of the generic type bit size and S scaled by 8 (the byte size). If TS is smaller than the generic type bit size then T is an unsigned integral type of bit size TS, otherwise T is the generic type. DR is the offset of a hypothetical debug information entry D in the current compilation unit for a base type T.

    Note

    Truncating the value when S is larger than the generic type matches what GDB does. This allows the generic type size to not be an integral byte size. It does allow S to be arbitrarily large. Should S be restricted to the size of the generic type rounded up to a multiple of 8?

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_deref_type S, DR, except if T is not the generic type, the value V pushed is zero-extended to the generic type bit size and its type changed to the generic type.

  4. DW_OP_deref_type

    DW_OP_deref_type has two operands. The first is a 1-byte unsigned integral constant S. The second is an unsigned LEB128 integer DR that represents the byte offset of a debugging information entry D relative to the beginning of the current compilation unit, that provides the type T of the result value.

    TS is the bit size of the type T.

    While the size of the pushed value V can be inferred from the type T, it is encoded explicitly as the operand S so that the operation can be parsed easily without reference to the .debug_info section.

    Note

    It is unclear why the operand S is needed. Unlike DW_OP_const_type, the size is not needed for parsing. Any evaluation needs to get the base type T to push with the value to know its encoding and bit size.

    It pops one stack entry that must be a location description L.

    A value V of TS bits is retrieved from the location storage LS specified by one of the single location descriptions SL of L.

    If L, or the location description of any composite location description part that is a subcomponent of L, has more than one single location description, then any one of them can be selected as they are required to all have the same value. For any single location description SL, bits are retrieved from the associated storage location starting at the bit offset specified by SL. For a composite location description, the retrieved bits are the concatenation of the N bits from each composite location part PL, where N is limited to the size of PL.

    V is pushed on the stack with the type T.

    Note

    This definition makes it an evaluation error if L is a register location description that has less than TS bits remaining in the register storage. Particularly since these extensions extend location descriptions to have a bit offset, it would be odd to define this as performing sign extension based on the type, or be target architecture dependent, as the number of remaining bits could be any number. This matches the GDB implementation for DW_OP_deref_type.

    These extensions define DW_OP_*breg* in terms of DW_OP_regval_type. DW_OP_regval_type is defined in terms of DW_OP_regx, which uses a 0 bit offset, and DW_OP_deref_type. Therefore, it requires the register size to be greater or equal to the address size of the address space. This matches the GDB implementation for DW_OP_*breg*.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if D is not in the current compilation unit, D is not a DW_TAG_base_type debugging information entry, or if TS divided by 8 (the byte size) and rounded up to a whole number is not equal to S.

    Note

    This definition allows the base type to be a bit size since there seems no reason to restrict it.

    It is an evaluation error if any bit of the value is retrieved from the undefined location storage or the offset of any bit exceeds the size of the location storage LS specified by any single location description SL of L.

    See Implicit Location Description Operations for special rules concerning implicit location descriptions created by the DW_OP_implicit_pointer and DW_OP_LLVM_implicit_aspace_pointer operations.

  5. DW_OP_xderef Deprecated

    DW_OP_xderef pops two stack entries. The first must be an integral type value that represents an address A. The second must be an integral type value that represents a target architecture specific address space identifier AS.

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_swap; DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address; DW_OP_deref. The value V retrieved is left on the stack with the generic type.

    This operation is deprecated as the DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address operation can be used and provides greater expressiveness.

  6. DW_OP_xderef_size Deprecated

    DW_OP_xderef_size has a single 1-byte unsigned integral constant that represents a byte result size S.

    It pops two stack entries. The first must be an integral type value that represents an address A. The second must be an integral type value that represents a target architecture specific address space identifier AS.

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_swap; DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address; DW_OP_deref_size S. The zero-extended value V retrieved is left on the stack with the generic type.

    This operation is deprecated as the DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address operation can be used and provides greater expressiveness.

  7. DW_OP_xderef_type Deprecated

    DW_OP_xderef_type has two operands. The first is a 1-byte unsigned integral constant S. The second operand is an unsigned LEB128 integer DR that represents the byte offset of a debugging information entry D relative to the beginning of the current compilation unit, that provides the type T of the result value.

    It pops two stack entries. The first must be an integral type value that represents an address A. The second must be an integral type value that represents a target architecture specific address space identifier AS.

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_swap; DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address; DW_OP_deref_type S R. The value V retrieved is left on the stack with the type D.

    This operation is deprecated as the DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address operation can be used and provides greater expressiveness.

  8. DW_OP_entry_value Deprecated

    DW_OP_entry_value pushes the value of an expression that is evaluated in the context of the calling frame.

    It may be used to determine the value of arguments on entry to the current call frame provided they are not clobbered.

    It has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer S. The second is a block of bytes, with a length equal S, interpreted as a DWARF operation expression E.

    E is evaluated with the current context, except the result kind is unspecified, the call frame is the one that called the current frame, the program location is the call site in the calling frame, the object is unspecified, and the initial stack is empty. The calling frame information is obtained by virtually unwinding the current call frame using the call frame information (see Call Frame Information).

    If the result of E is a location description L (see Register Location Description Operations), and the last operation executed by E is a DW_OP_reg* for register R with a target architecture specific base type of T, then the contents of the register are retrieved as if a DW_OP_deref_type DR operation was performed where DR is the offset of a hypothetical debug information entry in the current compilation unit for T. The resulting value V s pushed on the stack.

    Using DW_OP_reg* provides a more compact form for the case where the value was in a register on entry to the subprogram.

    If the result of E is a value V, then V is pushed on the stack.

    Otherwise, the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

    The DW_OP_entry_value operation is deprecated as its main usage is provided by other means. DWARF Version 5 added the DW_TAG_call_site_parameter debugger information entry for call sites that has DW_AT_call_value, DW_AT_call_data_location, and DW_AT_call_data_value attributes that provide DWARF expressions to compute actual parameter values at the time of the call, and requires the producer to ensure the expressions are valid to evaluate even when virtually unwound. The DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg operation provides access to registers in the virtually unwound calling frame.

    Note

    GDB only implements DW_OP_entry_value when E is exactly DW_OP_reg* or DW_OP_breg*; DW_OP_deref*.

Location Description Operations

This section describes the operations that push location descriptions on the stack.

General Location Description Operations
  1. DW_OP_LLVM_offset New

    DW_OP_LLVM_offset pops two stack entries. The first must be an integral type value that represents a byte displacement B. The second must be a location description L.

    It adds the value of B scaled by 8 (the byte size) to the bit offset of each single location description SL of L, and pushes the updated L.

    It is an evaluation error if the updated bit offset of any SL is less than 0 or greater than or equal to the size of the location storage specified by SL.

  2. DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst New

    DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst has a single unsigned LEB128 integer operand that represents a byte displacement B.

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_constu B; DW_OP_LLVM_offset.

    This operation is supplied specifically to be able to encode more field displacements in two bytes than can be done with DW_OP_lit*; DW_OP_LLVM_offset.

    Note

    Should this be named DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst to match DW_OP_plus_uconst, or DW_OP_LLVM_offset_constu to match DW_OP_constu?

  3. DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset New

    DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset pops two stack entries. The first must be an integral type value that represents a bit displacement B. The second must be a location description L.

    It adds the value of B to the bit offset of each single location description SL of L, and pushes the updated L.

    It is an evaluation error if the updated bit offset of any SL is less than 0 or greater than or equal to the size of the location storage specified by SL.

  4. DW_OP_push_object_address

    DW_OP_push_object_address pushes the location description L of the current object.

    This object may correspond to an independent variable that is part of a user presented expression that is being evaluated. The object location description may be determined from the variable’s own debugging information entry or it may be a component of an array, structure, or class whose address has been dynamically determined by an earlier step during user expression evaluation.

    This operation provides explicit functionality (especially for arrays involving descriptions) that is analogous to the implicit push of the base location description of a structure prior to evaluation of a ``DW_AT_data_member_location`` to access a data member of a structure.

    Note

    This operation could be removed and the object location description specified as the initial stack as for DW_AT_data_member_location.

    The only attribute that specifies a current object is DW_AT_data_location so the non-normative text seems to overstate how this is being used. Or are there other attributes that need to state they pass an object?

  5. DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg New

    DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg has a single unsigned LEB128 integer operand that represents a target architecture register number R.

    It pushes a location description L that holds the value of register R on entry to the current subprogram as defined by the call frame information (see Call Frame Information).

    If there is no call frame information defined, then the default rules for the target architecture are used. If the register rule is undefined, then the undefined location description is pushed. If the register rule is same value, then a register location description for R is pushed.

Undefined Location Description Operations

The undefined location storage represents a piece or all of an object that is present in the source but not in the object code (perhaps due to optimization). Neither reading nor writing to the undefined location storage is meaningful.

An undefined location description specifies the undefined location storage. There is no concept of the size of the undefined location storage, nor of a bit offset for an undefined location description. The DW_OP_LLVM_*offset operations leave an undefined location description unchanged. The DW_OP_*piece operations can explicitly or implicitly specify an undefined location description, allowing any size and offset to be specified, and results in a part with all undefined bits.

  1. DW_OP_LLVM_undefined New

    DW_OP_LLVM_undefined pushes a location description L that comprises one undefined location description SL.

Memory Location Description Operations

Each of the target architecture specific address spaces has a corresponding memory location storage that denotes the linear addressable memory of that address space. The size of each memory location storage corresponds to the range of the addresses in the corresponding address space.

It is target architecture defined how address space location storage maps to target architecture physical memory. For example, they may be independent memory, or more than one location storage may alias the same physical memory possibly at different offsets and with different interleaving. The mapping may also be dictated by the source language address classes.

A memory location description specifies a memory location storage. The bit offset corresponds to a bit position within a byte of the memory. Bits accessed using a memory location description, access the corresponding target architecture memory starting at the bit position within the byte specified by the bit offset.

A memory location description that has a bit offset that is a multiple of 8 (the byte size) is defined to be a byte address memory location description. It has a memory byte address A that is equal to the bit offset divided by 8.

A memory location description that does not have a bit offset that is a multiple of 8 (the byte size) is defined to be a bit field memory location description. It has a bit position B equal to the bit offset modulo 8, and a memory byte address A equal to the bit offset minus B that is then divided by 8.

The address space AS of a memory location description is defined to be the address space that corresponds to the memory location storage associated with the memory location description.

A location description that is comprised of one byte address memory location description SL is defined to be a memory byte address location description. It has a byte address equal to A and an address space equal to AS of the corresponding SL.

DW_ASPACE_none is defined as the target architecture default address space.

If a stack entry is required to be a location description, but it is a value V with the generic type, then it is implicitly converted to a location description L with one memory location description SL. SL specifies the memory location storage that corresponds to the target architecture default address space with a bit offset equal to V scaled by 8 (the byte size).

Note

If it is wanted to allow any integral type value to be implicitly converted to a memory location description in the target architecture default address space:

If a stack entry is required to be a location description, but is a value V with an integral type, then it is implicitly converted to a location description L with a one memory location description SL. If the type size of V is less than the generic type size, then the value V is zero extended to the size of the generic type. The least significant generic type size bits are treated as a twos-complement unsigned value to be used as an address A. SL specifies memory location storage corresponding to the target architecture default address space with a bit offset equal to A scaled by 8 (the byte size).

The implicit conversion could also be defined as target architecture specific. For example, GDB checks if V is an integral type. If it is not it gives an error. Otherwise, GDB zero-extends V to 64 bits. If the GDB target defines a hook function, then it is called. The target specific hook function can modify the 64-bit value, possibly sign extending based on the original value type. Finally, GDB treats the 64-bit value V as a memory location address.

If a stack entry is required to be a location description, but it is an implicit pointer value IPV with the target architecture default address space, then it is implicitly converted to a location description with one single location description specified by IPV. See Implicit Location Description Operations.

Note

Is this rule required for DWARF Version 5 backwards compatibility? If not, it can be eliminated, and the producer can use DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address.

If a stack entry is required to be a value, but it is a location description L with one memory location description SL in the target architecture default address space with a bit offset B that is a multiple of 8, then it is implicitly converted to a value equal to B divided by 8 (the byte size) with the generic type.

  1. DW_OP_addr

    DW_OP_addr has a single byte constant value operand, which has the size of the generic type, that represents an address A.

    It pushes a location description L with one memory location description SL on the stack. SL specifies the memory location storage corresponding to the target architecture default address space with a bit offset equal to A scaled by 8 (the byte size).

    If the DWARF is part of a code object, then A may need to be relocated. For example, in the ELF code object format, A must be adjusted by the difference between the ELF segment virtual address and the virtual address at which the segment is loaded.

  2. DW_OP_addrx

    DW_OP_addrx has a single unsigned LEB128 integer operand that represents a zero-based index into the .debug_addr section relative to the value of the DW_AT_addr_base attribute of the associated compilation unit. The address value A in the .debug_addr section has the size of the generic type.

    It pushes a location description L with one memory location description SL on the stack. SL specifies the memory location storage corresponding to the target architecture default address space with a bit offset equal to A scaled by 8 (the byte size).

    If the DWARF is part of a code object, then A may need to be relocated. For example, in the ELF code object format, A must be adjusted by the difference between the ELF segment virtual address and the virtual address at which the segment is loaded.

  3. DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address New

    DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address pops top two stack entries. The first must be an integral type value that represents a target architecture specific address space identifier AS. The second must be an integral type value that represents an address A.

    The address size S is defined as the address bit size of the target architecture specific address space that corresponds to AS.

    A is adjusted to S bits by zero extending if necessary, and then treating the least significant S bits as a twos-complement unsigned value A’.

    It pushes a location description L with one memory location description SL on the stack. SL specifies the memory location storage LS that corresponds to AS with a bit offset equal to A’ scaled by 8 (the byte size).

    If AS is an address space that is specific to context elements, then LS corresponds to the location storage associated with the current context.

    For example, if AS is for per thread storage then LS is the location storage for the current thread. For languages that are implemented using a SIMD or SIMT execution model, then if AS is for per lane storage then LS is the location storage for the current lane of the current thread. Therefore, if L is accessed by an operation, the location storage selected when the location description was created is accessed, and not the location storage associated with the current context of the access operation.

    The DWARF expression is ill-formed if AS is not one of the values defined by the target architecture specific DW_ASPACE_* values.

    See Implicit Location Description Operations for special rules concerning implicit pointer values produced by dereferencing implicit location descriptions created by the DW_OP_implicit_pointer and DW_OP_LLVM_implicit_aspace_pointer operations.

  4. DW_OP_form_tls_address

    DW_OP_form_tls_address pops one stack entry that must be an integral type value and treats it as a thread-local storage address TA.

    It pushes a location description L with one memory location description SL on the stack. SL is the target architecture specific memory location description that corresponds to the thread-local storage address TA.

    The meaning of the thread-local storage address TA is defined by the run-time environment. If the run-time environment supports multiple thread-local storage blocks for a single thread, then the block corresponding to the executable or shared library containing this DWARF expression is used.

    Some implementations of C, C++, Fortran, and other languages support a thread-local storage class. Variables with this storage class have distinct values and addresses in distinct threads, much as automatic variables have distinct values and addresses in each subprogram invocation. Typically, there is a single block of storage containing all thread-local variables declared in the main executable, and a separate block for the variables declared in each shared library. Each thread-local variable can then be accessed in its block using an identifier. This identifier is typically a byte offset into the block and pushed onto the DWARF stack by one of the DW_OP_const* operations prior to the DW_OP_form_tls_address operation. Computing the address of the appropriate block can be complex (in some cases, the compiler emits a function call to do it), and difficult to describe using ordinary DWARF location descriptions. Instead of forcing complex thread-local storage calculations into the DWARF expressions, the DW_OP_form_tls_address allows the consumer to perform the computation based on the target architecture specific run-time environment.

  5. DW_OP_call_frame_cfa

    DW_OP_call_frame_cfa pushes the location description L of the Canonical Frame Address (CFA) of the current subprogram, obtained from the call frame information on the stack. See Call Frame Information.

    Although the value of the DW_AT_frame_base attribute of the debugger information entry corresponding to the current subprogram can be computed using a location list expression, in some cases this would require an extensive location list because the values of the registers used in computing the CFA change during a subprogram execution. If the call frame information is present, then it already encodes such changes, and it is space efficient to reference that using the DW_OP_call_frame_cfa operation.

  6. DW_OP_fbreg

    DW_OP_fbreg has a single signed LEB128 integer operand that represents a byte displacement B.

    The location description L for the frame base of the current subprogram is obtained from the DW_AT_frame_base attribute of the debugger information entry corresponding to the current subprogram as described in Debugging Information Entry Attributes.

    The location description L is updated as if the DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst B operation was applied. The updated L is pushed on the stack.

  7. DW_OP_breg0, DW_OP_breg1, …, DW_OP_breg31

    The DW_OP_breg<N> operations encode the numbers of up to 32 registers, numbered from 0 through 31, inclusive. The register number R corresponds to the N in the operation name.

    They have a single signed LEB128 integer operand that represents a byte displacement B.

    The address space identifier AS is defined as the one corresponding to the target architecture specific default address space.

    The address size S is defined as the address bit size of the target architecture specific address space corresponding to AS.

    The contents of the register specified by R are retrieved as if a DW_OP_regval_type R, DR operation was performed where DR is the offset of a hypothetical debug information entry in the current compilation unit for an unsigned integral base type of size S bits. B is added and the least significant S bits are treated as an unsigned value to be used as an address A.

    They push a location description L comprising one memory location description LS on the stack. LS specifies the memory location storage that corresponds to AS with a bit offset equal to A scaled by 8 (the byte size).

  8. DW_OP_bregx

    DW_OP_bregx has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a register number R. The second is a signed LEB128 integer that represents a byte displacement B.

    The action is the same as for DW_OP_breg<N>, except that R is used as the register number and B is used as the byte displacement.

  9. DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_bregx New

    DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_bregx has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a register number R. The second is a signed LEB128 integer that represents a byte displacement B. It pops one stack entry that is required to be an integral type value that represents a target architecture specific address space identifier AS.

    The action is the same as for DW_OP_breg<N>, except that R is used as the register number, B is used as the byte displacement, and AS is used as the address space identifier.

    The DWARF expression is ill-formed if AS is not one of the values defined by the target architecture specific DW_ASPACE_* values.

    Note

    Could also consider adding DW_OP_aspace_breg0, DW_OP_aspace_breg1, ..., DW_OP_aspace_bref31 which would save encoding size.

Register Location Description Operations

There is a register location storage that corresponds to each of the target architecture registers. The size of each register location storage corresponds to the size of the corresponding target architecture register.

A register location description specifies a register location storage. The bit offset corresponds to a bit position within the register. Bits accessed using a register location description access the corresponding target architecture register starting at the specified bit offset.

  1. DW_OP_reg0, DW_OP_reg1, …, DW_OP_reg31

    DW_OP_reg<N> operations encode the numbers of up to 32 registers, numbered from 0 through 31, inclusive. The target architecture register number R corresponds to the N in the operation name.

    The operation is equivalent to performing DW_OP_regx R.

  2. DW_OP_regx

    DW_OP_regx has a single unsigned LEB128 integer operand that represents a target architecture register number R.

    If the current call frame is the top call frame, it pushes a location description L that specifies one register location description SL on the stack. SL specifies the register location storage that corresponds to R with a bit offset of 0 for the current thread.

    If the current call frame is not the top call frame, call frame information (see Call Frame Information) is used to determine the location description that holds the register for the current call frame and current program location of the current thread. The resulting location description L is pushed.

    Note that if call frame information is used, the resulting location description may be register, memory, or undefined.

    An implementation may evaluate the call frame information immediately, or may defer evaluation until L is accessed by an operation. If evaluation is deferred, R and the current context can be recorded in L. When accessed, the recorded context is used to evaluate the call frame information, not the current context of the access operation.

These operations obtain a register location. To fetch the contents of a register, it is necessary to use DW_OP_regval_type, use one of the DW_OP_breg* register-based addressing operations, or use DW_OP_deref* on a register location description.

Implicit Location Description Operations

Implicit location storage represents a piece or all of an object which has no actual location in the program but whose contents are nonetheless known, either as a constant or can be computed from other locations and values in the program.

An implicit location description specifies an implicit location storage. The bit offset corresponds to a bit position within the implicit location storage. Bits accessed using an implicit location description, access the corresponding implicit storage value starting at the bit offset.

  1. DW_OP_implicit_value

    DW_OP_implicit_value has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a byte size S. The second is a block of bytes with a length equal to S treated as a literal value V.

    An implicit location storage LS is created with the literal value V and a size of S.

    It pushes location description L with one implicit location description SL on the stack. SL specifies LS with a bit offset of 0.

  2. DW_OP_stack_value

    DW_OP_stack_value pops one stack entry that must be a value V.

    An implicit location storage LS is created with the literal value V and a size equal to V’s base type size.

    It pushes a location description L with one implicit location description SL on the stack. SL specifies LS with a bit offset of 0.

    The DW_OP_stack_value operation specifies that the object does not exist in memory, but its value is nonetheless known. In this form, the location description specifies the actual value of the object, rather than specifying the memory or register storage that holds the value.

    See Implicit Location Description Operations for special rules concerning implicit pointer values produced by dereferencing implicit location descriptions created by the DW_OP_implicit_pointer and DW_OP_LLVM_implicit_aspace_pointer operations.

    Note

    Since location descriptions are allowed on the stack, the DW_OP_stack_value operation no longer terminates the DWARF operation expression execution as in DWARF Version 5.

  3. DW_OP_implicit_pointer

    An optimizing compiler may eliminate a pointer, while still retaining the value that the pointer addressed. DW_OP_implicit_pointer allows a producer to describe this value.

    DW_OP_implicit_pointer specifies an object is a pointer to the target architecture default address space that cannot be represented as a real pointer, even though the value it would point to can be described. In this form, the location description specifies a debugging information entry that represents the actual location description of the object to which the pointer would point. Thus, a consumer of the debug information would be able to access the dereferenced pointer, even when it cannot access the pointer itself.

    DW_OP_implicit_pointer has two operands. The first operand is a 4-byte unsigned value in the 32-bit DWARF format, or an 8-byte unsigned value in the 64-bit DWARF format, that represents the byte offset DR of a debugging information entry D relative to the beginning of the .debug_info section that contains the current compilation unit. The second operand is a signed LEB128 integer that represents a byte displacement B.

    Note that D may not be in the current compilation unit.

    The first operand interpretation is exactly like that for DW_FORM_ref_addr.

    The address space identifier AS is defined as the one corresponding to the target architecture specific default address space.

    The address size S is defined as the address bit size of the target architecture specific address space corresponding to AS.

    An implicit location storage LS is created with the debugging information entry D, address space AS, and size of S.

    It pushes a location description L that comprises one implicit location description SL on the stack. SL specifies LS with a bit offset of 0.

    It is an evaluation error if a DW_OP_deref* operation pops a location description L’, and retrieves S bits, such that any retrieved bits come from an implicit location storage that is the same as LS, unless both the following conditions are met:

    1. All retrieved bits come from an implicit location description that refers to an implicit location storage that is the same as LS.

      Note that all bits do not have to come from the same implicit location description, as L’ may involve composite location descriptors.

    2. The bits come from consecutive ascending offsets within their respective implicit location storage.

    These rules are equivalent to retrieving the complete contents of LS.

    If both the above conditions are met, then the value V pushed by the DW_OP_deref* operation is an implicit pointer value IPV with a target architecture specific address space of AS, a debugging information entry of D, and a base type of T. If AS is the target architecture default address space, then T is the generic type. Otherwise, T is a target architecture specific integral type with a bit size equal to S.

    If IPV is either implicitly converted to a location description (only done if AS is the target architecture default address space) or used by DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address (only done if the address space popped by DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address is AS), then the resulting location description RL is:

    • If D has a DW_AT_location attribute, the DWARF expression E from the DW_AT_location attribute is evaluated with the current context, except that the result kind is a location description, the compilation unit is the one that contains D, the object is unspecified, and the initial stack is empty. RL is the expression result.

      Note that E is evaluated with the context of the expression accessing IPV, and not the context of the expression that contained the DW_OP_implicit_pointer or DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operation that created L.

    • If D has a DW_AT_const_value attribute, then an implicit location storage RLS is created from the DW_AT_const_value attribute’s value with a size matching the size of the DW_AT_const_value attribute’s value. RL comprises one implicit location description SRL. SRL specifies RLS with a bit offset of 0.

      Note

      If using DW_AT_const_value for variables and formal parameters is deprecated and instead DW_AT_location is used with an implicit location description, then this rule would not be required.

    • Otherwise, it is an evaluation error.

    The bit offset of RL is updated as if the DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst B operation was applied.

    If a DW_OP_stack_value operation pops a value that is the same as IPV, then it pushes a location description that is the same as L.

    It is an evaluation error if LS or IPV is accessed in any other manner.

    The restrictions on how an implicit pointer location description created by DW_OP_implicit_pointer and DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer can be used are to simplify the DWARF consumer. Similarly, for an implicit pointer value created by DW_OP_deref* and DW_OP_stack_value.*

  4. DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer New

    DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer has two operands that are the same as for DW_OP_implicit_pointer.

    It pops one stack entry that must be an integral type value that represents a target architecture specific address space identifier AS.

    The location description L that is pushed on the stack is the same as for DW_OP_implicit_pointer, except that the address space identifier used is AS.

    The DWARF expression is ill-formed if AS is not one of the values defined by the target architecture specific DW_ASPACE_* values.

    Note

    This definition of DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer may change when full support for address classes is added as required for languages such as OpenCL/SyCL.

Typically a DW_OP_implicit_pointer or DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operation is used in a DWARF expression E1 of a DW_TAG_variable or DW_TAG_formal_parameter debugging information entry D1’s DW_AT_location attribute. The debugging information entry referenced by the DW_OP_implicit_pointer or DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operations is typically itself a DW_TAG_variable or DW_TAG_formal_parameter debugging information entry D2 whose DW_AT_location attribute gives a second DWARF expression E2.

D1 and E1 are describing the location of a pointer type object. D2 and E2 are describing the location of the object pointed to by that pointer object.

However, D2 may be any debugging information entry that contains a DW_AT_location or DW_AT_const_value attribute (for example, DW_TAG_dwarf_procedure). By using E2, a consumer can reconstruct the value of the object when asked to dereference the pointer described by E1 which contains the DW_OP_implicit_pointer or DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operation.

Composite Location Description Operations

A composite location storage represents an object or value which may be contained in part of another location storage or contained in parts of more than one location storage.

Each part has a part location description L and a part bit size S. L can have one or more single location descriptions SL. If there are more than one SL then that indicates that part is located in more than one place. The bits of each place of the part comprise S contiguous bits from the location storage LS specified by SL starting at the bit offset specified by SL. All the bits must be within the size of LS or the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

A composite location storage can have zero or more parts. The parts are contiguous such that the zero-based location storage bit index will range over each part with no gaps between them. Therefore, the size of a composite location storage is the sum of the size of its parts. The DWARF expression is ill-formed if the size of the contiguous location storage is larger than the size of the memory location storage corresponding to the largest target architecture specific address space.

A composite location description specifies a composite location storage. The bit offset corresponds to a bit position within the composite location storage.

There are operations that create a composite location storage.

There are other operations that allow a composite location storage to be incrementally created. Each part is created by a separate operation. There may be one or more operations to create the final composite location storage. A series of such operations describes the parts of the composite location storage that are in the order that the associated part operations are executed.

To support incremental creation, a composite location storage can be in an incomplete state. When an incremental operation operates on an incomplete composite location storage, it adds a new part, otherwise it creates a new composite location storage. The DW_OP_LLVM_piece_end operation explicitly makes an incomplete composite location storage complete.

A composite location description that specifies a composite location storage that is incomplete is termed an incomplete composite location description. A composite location description that specifies a composite location storage that is complete is termed a complete composite location description.

If the top stack entry is a location description that has one incomplete composite location description SL after the execution of an operation expression has completed, SL is converted to a complete composite location description.

Note that this conversion does not happen after the completion of an operation expression that is evaluated on the same stack by the DW_OP_call* operations. Such executions are not a separate evaluation of an operation expression, but rather the continued evaluation of the same operation expression that contains the DW_OP_call* operation.

If a stack entry is required to be a location description L, but L has an incomplete composite location description, then the DWARF expression is ill-formed. The exception is for the operations involved in incrementally creating a composite location description as described below.

Note that a DWARF operation expression may arbitrarily compose composite location descriptions from any other location description, including those that have multiple single location descriptions, and those that have composite location descriptions.

The incremental composite location description operations are defined to be compatible with the definitions in DWARF Version 5.

  1. DW_OP_piece

    DW_OP_piece has a single unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a byte size S.

    The action is based on the context:

    • If the stack is empty, then a location description L comprised of one incomplete composite location description SL is pushed on the stack.

      An incomplete composite location storage LS is created with a single part P. P specifies a location description PL and has a bit size of S scaled by 8 (the byte size). PL is comprised of one undefined location description PSL.

      SL specifies LS with a bit offset of 0.

    • Otherwise, if the top stack entry is a location description L comprised of one incomplete composite location description SL, then the incomplete composite location storage LS that SL specifies is updated to append a new part P. P specifies a location description PL and has a bit size of S scaled by 8 (the byte size). PL is comprised of one undefined location description PSL. L is left on the stack.

    • Otherwise, if the top stack entry is a location description or can be converted to one, then it is popped and treated as a part location description PL. Then:

      • If the top stack entry (after popping PL) is a location description L comprised of one incomplete composite location description SL, then the incomplete composite location storage LS that SL specifies is updated to append a new part P. P specifies the location description PL and has a bit size of S scaled by 8 (the byte size). L is left on the stack.

      • Otherwise, a location description L comprised of one incomplete composite location description SL is pushed on the stack.

        An incomplete composite location storage LS is created with a single part P. P specifies the location description PL and has a bit size of S scaled by 8 (the byte size).

        SL specifies LS with a bit offset of 0.

    • Otherwise, the DWARF expression is ill-formed

    Many compilers store a single variable in sets of registers or store a variable partially in memory and partially in registers. DW_OP_piece provides a way of describing where a part of a variable is located.

    If a non-0 byte displacement is required, the DW_OP_LLVM_offset operation can be used to update the location description before using it as the part location description of a DW_OP_piece operation.

    The evaluation rules for the DW_OP_piece operation allow it to be compatible with the DWARF Version 5 definition.

    Note

    Since these extensions allow location descriptions to be entries on the stack, a simpler operation to create composite location descriptions. For example, just one operation that specifies how many parts, and pops pairs of stack entries for the part size and location description. Not only would this be a simpler operation and avoid the complexities of incomplete composite location descriptions, but it may also have a smaller encoding in practice. However, the desire for compatibility with DWARF Version 5 is likely a stronger consideration.

  2. DW_OP_bit_piece

    DW_OP_bit_piece has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents the part bit size S. The second is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a bit displacement B.

    The action is the same as for DW_OP_piece, except that any part created has the bit size S, and the location description PL of any created part is updated as if the DW_OP_constu B; DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset operations were applied.

    DW_OP_bit_piece is used instead of DW_OP_piece when the piece to be assembled is not byte-sized or is not at the start of the part location description.

    If a computed bit displacement is required, the DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset operation can be used to update the location description before using it as the part location description of a DW_OP_bit_piece operation.

    Note

    The bit offset operand is not needed as DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset can be used on the part’s location description.

  3. DW_OP_LLVM_piece_end New

    If the top stack entry is not a location description L comprised of one incomplete composite location description SL, then the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

    Otherwise, the incomplete composite location storage LS specified by SL is updated to be a complete composite location description with the same parts.

  4. DW_OP_LLVM_extend New

    DW_OP_LLVM_extend has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents the element bit size S. The second is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a count C.

    It pops one stack entry that must be a location description and is treated as the part location description PL.

    A location description L comprised of one complete composite location description SL is pushed on the stack.

    A complete composite location storage LS is created with C identical parts P. Each P specifies PL and has a bit size of S.

    SL specifies LS with a bit offset of 0.

    The DWARF expression is ill-formed if the element bit size or count are 0.

  5. DW_OP_LLVM_select_bit_piece New

    DW_OP_LLVM_select_bit_piece has two operands. The first is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents the element bit size S. The second is an unsigned LEB128 integer that represents a count C.

    It pops three stack entries. The first must be an integral type value that represents a bit mask value M. The second must be a location description that represents the one-location description L1. The third must be a location description that represents the zero-location description L0.

    A complete composite location storage LS is created with C parts PN ordered in ascending N from 0 to C-1 inclusive. Each PN specifies location description PLN and has a bit size of S.

    PLN is as if the DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset N*S operation was applied to PLXN.

    PLXN is the same as L0 if the Nth least significant bit of M is a zero, otherwise it is the same as L1.

    A location description L comprised of one complete composite location description SL is pushed on the stack. SL specifies LS with a bit offset of 0.

    The DWARF expression is ill-formed if S or C are 0, or if the bit size of M is less than C.

DWARF Location List Expressions

To meet the needs of recent computer architectures and optimization techniques, debugging information must be able to describe the location of an object whose location changes over the object’s lifetime, and may reside at multiple locations during parts of an object’s lifetime. Location list expressions are used in place of operation expressions whenever the object whose location is being described has these requirements.

A location list expression consists of a series of location list entries. Each location list entry is one of the following kinds:

Bounded location description

This kind of location list entry provides an operation expression that evaluates to the location description of an object that is valid over a lifetime bounded by a starting and ending address. The starting address is the lowest address of the address range over which the location is valid. The ending address is the address of the first location past the highest address of the address range.

The location list entry matches when the current program location is within the given range.

There are several kinds of bounded location description entries which differ in the way that they specify the starting and ending addresses.

Default location description

This kind of location list entry provides an operation expression that evaluates to the location description of an object that is valid when no bounded location description entry applies.

The location list entry matches when the current program location is not within the range of any bounded location description entry.

Base address

This kind of location list entry provides an address to be used as the base address for beginning and ending address offsets given in certain kinds of bounded location description entries. The applicable base address of a bounded location description entry is the address specified by the closest preceding base address entry in the same location list. If there is no preceding base address entry, then the applicable base address defaults to the base address of the compilation unit (see DWARF Version 5 section 3.1.1).

In the case of a compilation unit where all of the machine code is contained in a single contiguous section, no base address entry is needed.

End-of-list

This kind of location list entry marks the end of the location list expression.

The address ranges defined by the bounded location description entries of a location list expression may overlap. When they do, they describe a situation in which an object exists simultaneously in more than one place.

If all of the address ranges in a given location list expression do not collectively cover the entire range over which the object in question is defined, and there is no following default location description entry, it is assumed that the object is not available for the portion of the range that is not covered.

The result of the evaluation of a DWARF location list expression is:

  • If the current program location is not specified, then it is an evaluation error.

    Note

    If the location list only has a single default entry, should that be considered a match if there is no program location? If there are non-default entries then it seems it has to be an evaluation error when there is no program location as that indicates the location depends on the program location which is not known.

  • If there are no matching location list entries, then the result is a location description that comprises one undefined location description.

  • Otherwise, the operation expression E of each matching location list entry is evaluated with the current context, except that the result kind is a location description, the object is unspecified, and the initial stack is empty. The location list entry result is the location description returned by the evaluation of E.

    The result is a location description that is comprised of the union of the single location descriptions of the location description result of each matching location list entry.

A location list expression can only be used as the value of a debugger information entry attribute that is encoded using class loclist or loclistsptr (see DWARF Version 5 section 7.5.5). The value of the attribute provides an index into a separate object file section called .debug_loclists or .debug_loclists.dwo (for split DWARF object files) that contains the location list entries.

A DW_OP_call* and DW_OP_implicit_pointer operation can be used to specify a debugger information entry attribute that has a location list expression. Several debugger information entry attributes allow DWARF expressions that are evaluated with an initial stack that includes a location description that may originate from the evaluation of a location list expression.

This location list representation, the loclist and loclistsptr class, and the related DW_AT_loclists_base attribute are new in DWARF Version 5. Together they eliminate most, or all of the code object relocations previously needed for location list expressions.

Note

The rest of this section is the same as DWARF Version 5 section 2.6.2.

Segmented Addresses

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 2.12.

DWARF address classes are used for source languages that have the concept of memory spaces. They are used in the DW_AT_address_class attribute for pointer type, reference type, subprogram, and subprogram type debugger information entries.

Each DWARF address class is conceptually a separate source language memory space with its own lifetime and aliasing rules. DWARF address classes are used to specify the source language memory spaces that pointer type and reference type values refer, and to specify the source language memory space in which variables are allocated.

The set of currently defined source language DWARF address classes, together with source language mappings, is given in Address class.

Vendor defined source language address classes may be defined using codes in the range DW_ADDR_LLVM_lo_user to DW_ADDR_LLVM_hi_user.

Address class
Address Class Name Meaning C/C++ OpenCL CUDA/HIP
DW_ADDR_none generic default generic default
DW_ADDR_LLVM_global global   global  
DW_ADDR_LLVM_constant constant   constant constant
DW_ADDR_LLVM_group thread-group   local shared
DW_ADDR_LLVM_private thread   private  
DW_ADDR_LLVM_lo_user        
DW_ADDR_LLVM_hi_user        

DWARF address spaces correspond to target architecture specific linear addressable memory areas. They are used in DWARF expression location descriptions to describe in which target architecture specific memory area data resides.

Target architecture specific DWARF address spaces may correspond to hardware supported facilities such as memory utilizing base address registers, scratchpad memory, and memory with special interleaving. The size of addresses in these address spaces may vary. Their access and allocation may be hardware managed with each thread or group of threads having access to independent storage. For these reasons they may have properties that do not allow them to be viewed as part of the unified global virtual address space accessible by all threads.

It is target architecture specific whether multiple DWARF address spaces are supported and how source language DWARF address classes map to target architecture specific DWARF address spaces. A target architecture may map multiple source language DWARF address classes to the same target architecture specific DWARF address class. Optimization may determine that variable lifetime and access pattern allows them to be allocated in faster scratchpad memory represented by a different DWARF address space.

Although DWARF address space identifiers are target architecture specific, DW_ASPACE_none is a common address space supported by all target architectures.

DWARF address space identifiers are used by:

  • The DWARF expession operations: DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_bregx, DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address, DW_OP_LLVM_implicit_aspace_pointer, and DW_OP_xderef*.
  • The CFI instructions: DW_CFA_def_aspace_cfa and DW_CFA_def_aspace_cfa_sf.

Note

With the definition of DWARF address classes and DWARF address spaces in these extensions, DWARF Version 5 table 2.7 needs to be updated. It seems it is an example of DWARF address spaces and not DWARF address classes.

Note

With the expanded support for DWARF address spaces in these extensions, it may be worth examining if DWARF segments can be eliminated and DWARF address spaces used instead.

That may involve extending DWARF address spaces to also be used to specify code locations. In target architectures that use different memory areas for code and data this would seem a natural use for DWARF address spaces. This would allow DWARF expression location descriptions to be used to describe the location of subprograms and entry points that are used in expressions involving subprogram pointer type values.

Currently, DWARF expressions assume data and code resides in the same default DWARF address space, and only the address ranges in DWARF location list entries and in the .debug_aranges section for accelerated access for addresses allow DWARF segments to be used to distinguish.

Note

Currently, DWARF defines address class values as being target architecture specific. It is unclear how language specific memory spaces are intended to be represented in DWARF using these.

For example, OpenCL defines memory spaces (called address spaces in OpenCL) for global, local, constant, and private. These are part of the type system and are modifiers to pointer types. In addition, OpenCL defines generic pointers that can reference either the global, local, or private memory spaces. To support the OpenCL language the debugger would want to support casting pointers between the generic and other memory spaces, querying what memory space a generic pointer value is currently referencing, and possibly using pointer casting to form an address for a specific memory space out of an integral value.

The method to use to dereference a pointer type or reference type value is defined in DWARF expressions using DW_OP_xderef* which uses a target architecture specific address space.

DWARF defines the DW_AT_address_class attribute on pointer type and reference type debugger information entries. It specifies the method to use to dereference them. Why is the value of this not the same as the address space value used in DW_OP_xderef*? In both cases it is target architecture specific and the architecture presumably will use the same set of methods to dereference pointers in both cases.

Since DW_AT_address_class uses a target architecture specific value, it cannot in general capture the source language memory space type modifier concept. On some architectures all source language memory space modifiers may actually use the same method for dereferencing pointers.

One possibility is for DWARF to add an DW_TAG_LLVM_address_class_type debugger information entry type modifier that can be applied to a pointer type and reference type. The DW_AT_address_class attribute could be re-defined to not be target architecture specific and instead define generalized language values (as presented above for DWARF address classes in the table Address class) that will support OpenCL and other languages using memory spaces. The DW_AT_address_class attribute could be defined to not be applied to pointer types or reference types, but instead only to the new DW_TAG_LLVM_address_class_type type modifier debugger information entry.

If a pointer type or reference type is not modified by DW_TAG_LLVM_address_class_type or if DW_TAG_LLVM_address_class_type has no DW_AT_address_class attribute, then the pointer type or reference type would be defined to use the DW_ADDR_none address class as currently. Since modifiers can be chained, it would need to be defined if multiple DW_TAG_LLVM_address_class_type modifiers were legal, and if so if the outermost one is the one that takes precedence.

A target architecture implementation that supports multiple address spaces would need to map DW_ADDR_none appropriately to support CUDA-like languages that have no address classes in the type system but do support variable allocation in address classes. Such variable allocation would result in the variable’s location description needing an address space.

The approach presented in Address class is to define the default DW_ADDR_none to be the generic address class and not the global address class. This matches how CLANG and LLVM have added support for CUDA-like languages on top of existing C++ language support. This allows all addresses to be generic by default which matches CUDA-like languages.

An alternative approach is to define DW_ADDR_none as being the global address class and then change DW_ADDR_LLVM_global to DW_ADDR_LLVM_generic. This would match the reality that languages that do not support multiple memory spaces only have one default global memory space. Generally, in these languages if they expose that the target architecture supports multiple address spaces, the default one is still the global memory space. Then a language that does support multiple memory spaces has to explicitly indicate which pointers have the added ability to reference more than the global memory space. However, compilers generating DWARF for CUDA-like languages would then have to define every CUDA-like language pointer type or reference type using DW_TAG_LLVM_address_class_type with a DW_AT_address_class attribute of DW_ADDR_LLVM_generic to match the language semantics.

A new DW_AT_LLVM_address_space attribute could be defined that can be applied to pointer type, reference type, subprogram, and subprogram type to describe how objects having the given type are dereferenced or called (the role that DW_AT_address_class currently provides). The values of DW_AT_address_space would be target architecture specific and the same as used in DW_OP_xderef*.

Note

Some additional changes will be made to support languages such as OpenCL/SyCL that allow address class pointer casting and queries.

This requires the compiler to provide the mapping from address space to address class which may be runtime and not target architecture dependent. Some implementations may have a one-to-one mapping from source language address class to target architecture address space, and some may have a many-to-one mapping which requires knowledge of the address class when determining if pointer address class casts are allowed.

The changes will likely add an attribute that has an expression provided by the compiler to map from address class to address space. The DW_OP_implicit_pointer and DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer operations may be changed as the current IPV definition may not provide enough information when used to cast between address classes. Other attributes and operations may be needed. The legal casts between address classes may need to be defined on a per language address class basis.

Debugging Information Entry Attributes

Note

This section provides changes to existing debugger information entry attributes and defines attributes added by these extensions. These would be incorporated into the appropriate DWARF Version 5 chapter 2 sections.

  1. DW_AT_location

    Any debugging information entry describing a data object (which includes variables and parameters) or common blocks may have a DW_AT_location attribute, whose value is a DWARF expression E.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The result of the evaluation is the location description of the base of the data object.

    See Control Flow Operations for special evaluation rules used by the DW_OP_call* operations.

    Note

    Delete the description of how the DW_OP_call* operations evaluate a DW_AT_location attribute as that is now described in the operations.

    Note

    See the discussion about the DW_AT_location attribute in the DW_OP_call* operation. Having each attribute only have a single purpose and single execution semantics seems desirable. It makes it easier for the consumer that no longer have to track the context. It makes it easier for the producer as it can rely on a single semantics for each attribute.

    For that reason, limiting the DW_AT_location attribute to only supporting evaluating the location description of an object, and using a different attribute and encoding class for the evaluation of DWARF expression procedures on the same operation expression stack seems desirable.

  2. DW_AT_const_value

    Note

    Could deprecate using the DW_AT_const_value attribute for DW_TAG_variable or DW_TAG_formal_parameter debugger information entries that have been optimized to a constant. Instead, DW_AT_location could be used with a DWARF expression that produces an implicit location description now that any location description can be used within a DWARF expression. This allows the DW_OP_call* operations to be used to push the location description of any variable regardless of how it is optimized.

  3. DW_AT_frame_base

    A DW_TAG_subprogram or DW_TAG_entry_point debugger information entry may have a DW_AT_frame_base attribute, whose value is a DWARF expression E.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if E contains an DW_OP_fbreg operation, or the resulting location description L is not comprised of one single location description SL.

    If SL a register location description for register R, then L is replaced with the result of evaluating a DW_OP_bregx R, 0 operation. This computes the frame base memory location description in the target architecture default address space.

    This allows the more compact DW_OPreg* to be used instead of DW_OP_breg* 0.

    Note

    This rule could be removed and require the producer to create the required location description directly using DW_OP_call_frame_cfa, DW_OP_breg*, or DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_bregx. This would also then allow a target to implement the call frames within a large register.

    Otherwise, the DWARF is ill-formed if SL is not a memory location description in any of the target architecture specific address spaces.

    The resulting L is the frame base for the subprogram or entry point.

    Typically, E will use the DW_OP_call_frame_cfa operation or be a stack pointer register plus or minus some offset.

  4. DW_AT_data_member_location

    For a DW_AT_data_member_location attribute there are two cases:

    1. If the attribute is an integer constant B, it provides the offset in bytes from the beginning of the containing entity.

      The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating a DW_OP_LLVM_offset B operation with an initial stack comprising the location description of the beginning of the containing entity. The result of the evaluation is the location description of the base of the member entry.

      If the beginning of the containing entity is not byte aligned, then the beginning of the member entry has the same bit displacement within a byte.

    2. Otherwise, the attribute must be a DWARF expression E which is evaluated with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an initial stack comprising the location description of the beginning of the containing entity, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The result of the evaluation is the location description of the base of the member entry.

    Note

    The beginning of the containing entity can now be any location description, including those with more than one single location description, and those with single location descriptions that are of any kind and have any bit offset.

  5. DW_AT_use_location

    The DW_TAG_ptr_to_member_type debugging information entry has a DW_AT_use_location attribute whose value is a DWARF expression E. It is used to compute the location description of the member of the class to which the pointer to member entry points.

    The method used to find the location description of a given member of a class, structure, or union is common to any instance of that class, structure, or union and to any instance of the pointer to member type. The method is thus associated with the pointer to member type, rather than with each object that has a pointer to member type.

    The DW_AT_use_location DWARF expression is used in conjunction with the location description for a particular object of the given pointer to member type and for a particular structure or class instance.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an initial stack comprising two entries, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The first stack entry is the value of the pointer to member object itself. The second stack entry is the location description of the base of the entire class, structure, or union instance containing the member whose location is being calculated. The result of the evaluation is the location description of the member of the class to which the pointer to member entry points.

  6. DW_AT_data_location

    The DW_AT_data_location attribute may be used with any type that provides one or more levels of hidden indirection and/or run-time parameters in its representation. Its value is a DWARF operation expression E which computes the location description of the data for an object. When this attribute is omitted, the location description of the data is the same as the location description of the object.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an object that is the location description of the data descriptor, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The result of the evaluation is the location description of the base of the member entry.

    E will typically involve an operation expression that begins with a DW_OP_push_object_address operation which loads the location description of the object which can then serve as a description in subsequent calculation.

    Note

    Since DW_AT_data_member_location, DW_AT_use_location, and DW_AT_vtable_elem_location allow both operation expressions and location list expressions, why does DW_AT_data_location not allow both? In all cases they apply to data objects so less likely that optimization would cause different operation expressions for different program location ranges. But if supporting for some then should be for all.

    It seems odd this attribute is not the same as DW_AT_data_member_location in having an initial stack with the location description of the object since the expression has to need it.

  7. DW_AT_vtable_elem_location

    An entry for a virtual function also has a DW_AT_vtable_elem_location attribute whose value is a DWARF expression E.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an initial stack comprising the location description of the object of the enclosing type, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The result of the evaluation is the location description of the slot for the function within the virtual function table for the enclosing class.

  8. DW_AT_static_link

    If a DW_TAG_subprogram or DW_TAG_entry_point debugger information entry is lexically nested, it may have a DW_AT_static_link attribute, whose value is a DWARF expression E.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The result of the evaluation is the location description L of the canonical frame address (see Call Frame Information) of the relevant call frame of the subprogram instance that immediately lexically encloses the current call frame’s subprogram or entry point.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if L is is not comprised of one memory location description for one of the target architecture specific address spaces.

  9. DW_AT_return_addr

    A DW_TAG_subprogram, DW_TAG_inlined_subroutine, or DW_TAG_entry_point debugger information entry may have a DW_AT_return_addr attribute, whose value is a DWARF expression E.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The result of the evaluation is the location description L of the place where the return address for the current call frame’s subprogram or entry point is stored.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if L is not comprised of one memory location description for one of the target architecture specific address spaces.

    Note

    It is unclear why DW_TAG_inlined_subroutine has a DW_AT_return_addr attribute but not a DW_AT_frame_base or DW_AT_static_link attribute. Seems it would either have all of them or none. Since inlined subprograms do not have a call frame it seems they would have none of these attributes.

  10. DW_AT_call_value, DW_AT_call_data_location, and DW_AT_call_data_value

    A DW_TAG_call_site_parameter debugger information entry may have a DW_AT_call_value attribute, whose value is a DWARF operation expression E1.

    The result of the DW_AT_call_value attribute is obtained by evaluating E1 with a context that has a result kind of a value, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The resulting value V1 is the value of the parameter at the time of the call made by the call site.

    For parameters passed by reference, where the code passes a pointer to a location which contains the parameter, or for reference type parameters, the DW_TAG_call_site_parameter debugger information entry may also have a DW_AT_call_data_location attribute whose value is a DWARF operation expression E2, and a DW_AT_call_data_value attribute whose value is a DWARF operation expression E3.

    The value of the DW_AT_call_data_location attribute is obtained by evaluating E2 with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The resulting location description L2 is the location where the referenced parameter lives during the call made by the call site. If E2 would just be a DW_OP_push_object_address, then the DW_AT_call_data_location attribute may be omitted.

    The value of the DW_AT_call_data_value attribute is obtained by evaluating E3 with a context that has a result kind of a value, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any. The resulting value V3 is the value in L2 at the time of the call made by the call site.

    The result of these attributes is undefined if the current call frame is not for the subprogram containing the DW_TAG_call_site_parameter debugger information entry or the current program location is not for the call site containing the DW_TAG_call_site_parameter debugger information entry in the current call frame.

    The consumer may have to virtually unwind to the call site (see Call Frame Information) in order to evaluate these attributes. This will ensure the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused corresponds to the call site needed to evaluate the expression.

    If it is not possible to avoid the expressions of these attributes from accessing registers or memory locations that might be clobbered by the subprogram being called by the call site, then the associated attribute should not be provided.

    The reason for the restriction is that the parameter may need to be accessed during the execution of the callee. The consumer may virtually unwind from the called subprogram back to the caller and then evaluate the attribute expressions. The call frame information (see Call Frame Information) will not be able to restore registers that have been clobbered, and clobbered memory will no longer have the value at the time of the call.

  11. DW_AT_LLVM_lanes New

    For languages that are implemented using a SIMD or SIMT execution model, a DW_TAG_subprogram, DW_TAG_inlined_subroutine, or DW_TAG_entry_point debugger information entry may have a DW_AT_LLVM_lanes attribute whose value is an integer constant that is the number of lanes per thread. This is the static number of lanes per thread. It is not the dynamic number of lanes with which the thread was initiated, for example, due to smaller or partial work-groups.

    If not present, the default value of 1 is used.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if the value is 0.

  12. DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc New

    For languages that are implemented using a SIMD or SIMT execution model, a DW_TAG_subprogram, DW_TAG_inlined_subroutine, or DW_TAG_entry_point debugging information entry may have a DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc attribute whose value is a DWARF expression E.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a location description, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any.

    The resulting location description L is for a thread lane count sized vector of generic type elements. The thread lane count is the value of the DW_AT_LLVM_lanes attribute. Each element holds the conceptual program location of the corresponding lane, where the least significant element corresponds to the first target architecture specific lane identifier and so forth. If the lane was not active when the current subprogram was called, its element is an undefined location description.

    DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc allows the compiler to indicate conceptually where each lane of a SIMT thread is positioned even when it is in divergent control flow that is not active.

    Typically, the result is a location description with one composite location description with each part being a location description with either one undefined location description or one memory location description.

    If not present, the thread is not being used in a SIMT manner, and the thread’s current program location is used.

  13. DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane New

    For languages that are implemented using a SIMD or SIMT execution model, a DW_TAG_subprogram, DW_TAG_inlined_subroutine, or DW_TAG_entry_point debugger information entry may have a DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane attribute whose value is a DWARF expression E.

    The result of the attribute is obtained by evaluating E with a context that has a result kind of a value, an unspecified object, the compilation unit that contains E, an empty initial stack, and other context elements corresponding to the source language thread of execution upon which the user is focused, if any.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if the resulting value V is not an integral value.

    The resulting V is a bit mask of active lanes for the current program location. The Nth least significant bit of the mask corresponds to the Nth lane. If the bit is 1 the lane is active, otherwise it is inactive.

    Some targets may update the target architecture execution mask for regions of code that must execute with different sets of lanes than the current active lanes. For example, some code must execute with all lanes made temporarily active. DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane allows the compiler to provide the means to determine the source language active lanes.

    If not present and DW_AT_LLVM_lanes is greater than 1, then the target architecture execution mask is used.

  14. DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size New

    A DW_TAG_base_type debugger information entry for a base type T may have a DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size attribute whose value is an integer constant that is the vector type size N.

    The representation of a vector base type is as N contiguous elements, each one having the representation of a base type T’ that is the same as T without the DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size attribute.

    If a DW_TAG_base_type debugger information entry does not have a DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size attribute, then the base type is not a vector type.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if N is not greater than 0.

    Note

    LLVM has mention of a non-upstreamed debugger information entry that is intended to support vector types. However, that was not for a base type so would not be suitable as the type of a stack value entry. But perhaps that could be replaced by using this attribute.

  15. DW_AT_LLVM_augmentation New

    A DW_TAG_compile_unit debugger information entry for a compilation unit may have a DW_AT_LLVM_augmentation attribute, whose value is an augmentation string.

    The augmentation string allows producers to indicate that there is additional vendor or target specific information in the debugging information entries. For example, this might be information about the version of vendor specific extensions that are being used.

    If not present, or if the string is empty, then the compilation unit has no augmentation string.

    The format for the augmentation string is:

    [vendor:vX.Y[:options]]*

    Where vendor is the producer, vX.Y specifies the major X and minor Y version number of the extensions used, and options is an optional string providing additional information about the extensions. The version number must conform to semantic versioning [SEMVER]. The options string must not contain the “]” character.

    For example:

    [abc:v0.0][def:v1.2:feature-a=on,feature-b=3]
    

Program Scope Entities

Unit Entities

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 3.1.1 and Table 3.1.

Additional language codes defined for use with the DW_AT_language attribute are defined in Language Names.

Language Names
Language Name Meaning
DW_LANG_LLVM_HIP HIP Language.

The HIP language [HIP] can be supported by extending the C++ language.

Other Debugger Information

Accelerated Access

Lookup By Name
Contents of the Name Index

Note

The following provides changes to DWARF Version 5 section 6.1.1.1.

The rule for debugger information entries included in the name index in the optional .debug_names section is extended to also include named DW_TAG_variable debugging information entries with a DW_AT_location attribute that includes a DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address operation.

The name index must contain an entry for each debugging information entry that defines a named subprogram, label, variable, type, or namespace, subject to the following rules:

  • DW_TAG_variable debugging information entries with a DW_AT_location attribute that includes a DW_OP_addr, DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address, or DW_OP_form_tls_address operation are included; otherwise, they are excluded.
Data Representation of the Name Index
Section Header

Note

The following provides an addition to DWARF Version 5 section 6.1.1.4.1 item 14 augmentation_string.

A null-terminated UTF-8 vendor specific augmentation string, which provides additional information about the contents of this index. If provided, the recommended format for augmentation string is:

[vendor:vX.Y[:options]]*

Where vendor is the producer, vX.Y specifies the major X and minor Y version number of the extensions used in the DWARF of the compilation unit, and options is an optional string providing additional information about the extensions. The version number must conform to semantic versioning [SEMVER]. The options string must not contain the “]” character.

For example:

[abc:v0.0][def:v1.2:feature-a=on,feature-b=3]

Note

This is different to the definition in DWARF Version 5 but is consistent with the other augmentation strings and allows multiple vendor extensions to be supported.

Line Number Information

The Line Number Program Header
Standard Content Descriptions

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 6.2.4.1.

  1. DW_LNCT_LLVM_source

    The component is a null-terminated UTF-8 source text string with “\n” line endings. This content code is paired with the same forms as DW_LNCT_path. It can be used for file name entries.

    The value is an empty null-terminated string if no source is available. If the source is available but is an empty file then the value is a null-terminated single “\n”.

    When the source field is present, consumers can use the embedded source instead of attempting to discover the source on disk using the file path provided by the DW_LNCT_path field. When the source field is absent, consumers can access the file to get the source text.

    This is particularly useful for programing languages that support runtime compilation and runtime generation of source text. In these cases, the source text does not reside in any permanent file. For example, the OpenCL language [:ref:`OpenCL <amdgpu-dwarf-OpenCL>`] supports online compilation.

  2. DW_LNCT_LLVM_is_MD5

    DW_LNCT_LLVM_is_MD5 indicates if the DW_LNCT_MD5 content kind, if present, is valid: when 0 it is not valid and when 1 it is valid. If DW_LNCT_LLVM_is_MD5 content kind is not present, and DW_LNCT_MD5 content kind is present, then the MD5 checksum is valid.

    DW_LNCT_LLVM_is_MD5 is always paired with the DW_FORM_udata form.

    This allows a compilation unit to have a mixture of files with and without MD5 checksums. This can happen when multiple relocatable files are linked together.

Call Frame Information

Note

This section provides changes to existing call frame information and defines instructions added by these extensions. Additional support is added for address spaces. Register unwind DWARF expressions are generalized to allow any location description, including those with composite and implicit location descriptions.

These changes would be incorporated into the DWARF Version 5 section 6.1.

Structure of Call Frame Information

The register rules are:

undefined

A register that has this rule has no recoverable value in the previous frame. The previous value of this register is the undefined location description (see Undefined Location Description Operations).

By convention, the register is not preserved by a callee.

same value

This register has not been modified from the previous caller frame.

If the current frame is the top frame, then the previous value of this register is the location description L that specifies one register location description SL. SL specifies the register location storage that corresponds to the register with a bit offset of 0 for the current thread.

If the current frame is not the top frame, then the previous value of this register is the location description obtained using the call frame information for the callee frame and callee program location invoked by the current caller frame for the same register.

By convention, the register is preserved by the callee, but the callee has not modified it.

offset(N)
N is a signed byte offset. The previous value of this register is saved at the location description computed as if the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_LLVM_offset N is evaluated with the current context, except the result kind is a location description, the compilation unit is unspecified, the object is unspecified, and an initial stack comprising the location description of the current CFA (see DWARF Operation Expressions).
val_offset(N)

N is a signed byte offset. The previous value of this register is the memory byte address of the location description computed as if the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_LLVM_offset N is evaluated with the current context, except the result kind is a location description, the compilation unit is unspecified, the object is unspecified, and an initial stack comprising the location description of the current CFA (see DWARF Operation Expressions).

The DWARF is ill-formed if the CFA location description is not a memory byte address location description, or if the register size does not match the size of an address in the address space of the current CFA location description.

Since the CFA location description is required to be a memory byte address location description, the value of val_offset(N) will also be a memory byte address location description since it is offsetting the CFA location description by N bytes. Furthermore, the value of val_offset(N) will be a memory byte address in the same address space as the CFA location description.

Note

Should DWARF allow the address size to be a different size to the size of the register? Requiring them to be the same bit size avoids any issue of conversion as the bit contents of the register is simply interpreted as a value of the address.

GDB has a per register hook that allows a target specific conversion on a register by register basis. It defaults to truncation of bigger registers, and to actually reading bytes from the next register (or reads out of bounds for the last register) for smaller registers. There are no GDB tests that read a register out of bounds (except an illegal hand written assembly test).

register(R)

This register has been stored in another register numbered R.

The previous value of this register is the location description obtained using the call frame information for the current frame and current program location for register R.

The DWARF is ill-formed if the size of this register does not match the size of register R or if there is a cyclic dependency in the call frame information.

Note

Should this also allow R to be larger than this register? If so is the value stored in the low order bits and it is undefined what is stored in the extra upper bits?

expression(E)

The previous value of this register is located at the location description produced by evaluating the DWARF operation expression E (see DWARF Operation Expressions).

E is evaluated with the current context, except the result kind is a location description, the compilation unit is unspecified, the object is unspecified, and an initial stack comprising the location description of the current CFA (see DWARF Operation Expressions).

val_expression(E)

The previous value of this register is the value produced by evaluating the DWARF operation expression E (see DWARF Operation Expressions).

E is evaluated with the current context, except the result kind is a value, the compilation unit is unspecified, the object is unspecified, and an initial stack comprising the location description of the current CFA (see DWARF Operation Expressions).

The DWARF is ill-formed if the resulting value type size does not match the register size.

Note

This has limited usefulness as the DWARF expression E can only produce values up to the size of the generic type. This is due to not allowing any operations that specify a type in a CFI operation expression. This makes it unusable for registers that are larger than the generic type. However, expression(E) can be used to create an implicit location description of any size.

architectural
The rule is defined externally to this specification by the augmenter.

A Common Information Entry (CIE) holds information that is shared among many Frame Description Entries (FDE). There is at least one CIE in every non-empty .debug_frame section. A CIE contains the following fields, in order:

  1. length (initial length)

    A constant that gives the number of bytes of the CIE structure, not including the length field itself. The size of the length field plus the value of length must be an integral multiple of the address size specified in the address_size field.

  2. CIE_id (4 or 8 bytes, see 32-Bit and 64-Bit DWARF Formats)

    A constant that is used to distinguish CIEs from FDEs.

    In the 32-bit DWARF format, the value of the CIE id in the CIE header is 0xffffffff; in the 64-bit DWARF format, the value is 0xffffffffffffffff.

  3. version (ubyte)

    A version number. This number is specific to the call frame information and is independent of the DWARF version number.

    The value of the CIE version number is 4.

    Note

    Would this be increased to 5 to reflect the changes in these extensions?

  4. augmentation (sequence of UTF-8 characters)

    A null-terminated UTF-8 string that identifies the augmentation to this CIE or to the FDEs that use it. If a reader encounters an augmentation string that is unexpected, then only the following fields can be read:

    • CIE: length, CIE_id, version, augmentation
    • FDE: length, CIE_pointer, initial_location, address_range

    If there is no augmentation, this value is a zero byte.

    The augmentation string allows users to indicate that there is additional vendor and target architecture specific information in the CIE or FDE which is needed to virtually unwind a stack frame. For example, this might be information about dynamically allocated data which needs to be freed on exit from the routine.

    Because the .debug_frame section is useful independently of any .debug_info section, the augmentation string always uses UTF-8 encoding.

    The recommended format for the augmentation string is:

    [vendor:vX.Y[:options]]*

    Where vendor is the producer, vX.Y specifies the major X and minor Y version number of the extensions used, and options is an optional string providing additional information about the extensions. The version number must conform to semantic versioning [SEMVER]. The options string must not contain the “]” character.

    For example:

    [abc:v0.0][def:v1.2:feature-a=on,feature-b=3]
    
  5. address_size (ubyte)

    The size of a target address in this CIE and any FDEs that use it, in bytes. If a compilation unit exists for this frame, its address size must match the address size here.

  6. segment_selector_size (ubyte)

    The size of a segment selector in this CIE and any FDEs that use it, in bytes.

  7. code_alignment_factor (unsigned LEB128)

    A constant that is factored out of all advance location instructions (see Row Creation Instructions). The resulting value is (operand * code_alignment_factor).

  8. data_alignment_factor (signed LEB128)

    A constant that is factored out of certain offset instructions (see CFA Definition Instructions and Register Rule Instructions). The resulting value is (operand * data_alignment_factor).

  9. return_address_register (unsigned LEB128)

    An unsigned LEB128 constant that indicates which column in the rule table represents the return address of the subprogram. Note that this column might not correspond to an actual machine register.

    The value of the return address register is used to determine the program location of the caller frame. The program location of the top frame is the target architecture program counter value of the current thread.

  10. initial_instructions (array of ubyte)

    A sequence of rules that are interpreted to create the initial setting of each column in the table.

    The default rule for all columns before interpretation of the initial instructions is the undefined rule. However, an ABI authoring body or a compilation system authoring body may specify an alternate default value for any or all columns.

  11. padding (array of ubyte)

    Enough DW_CFA_nop instructions to make the size of this entry match the length value above.

An FDE contains the following fields, in order:

  1. length (initial length)

    A constant that gives the number of bytes of the header and instruction stream for this subprogram, not including the length field itself. The size of the length field plus the value of length must be an integral multiple of the address size.

  2. CIE_pointer (4 or 8 bytes, see 32-Bit and 64-Bit DWARF Formats)

    A constant offset into the .debug_frame section that denotes the CIE that is associated with this FDE.

  3. initial_location (segment selector and target address)

    The address of the first location associated with this table entry. If the segment_selector_size field of this FDE’s CIE is non-zero, the initial location is preceded by a segment selector of the given length.

  4. address_range (target address)

    The number of bytes of program instructions described by this entry.

  5. instructions (array of ubyte)

    A sequence of table defining instructions that are described in Call Frame Instructions.

  6. padding (array of ubyte)

    Enough DW_CFA_nop instructions to make the size of this entry match the length value above.

Call Frame Instructions

Some call frame instructions have operands that are encoded as DWARF operation expressions E (see DWARF Operation Expressions). The DWARF operations that can be used in E have the following restrictions:

  • DW_OP_addrx, DW_OP_call2, DW_OP_call4, DW_OP_call_ref, DW_OP_const_type, DW_OP_constx, DW_OP_convert, DW_OP_deref_type, DW_OP_fbreg, DW_OP_implicit_pointer, DW_OP_regval_type, DW_OP_reinterpret, and DW_OP_xderef_type operations are not allowed because the call frame information must not depend on other debug sections.

  • DW_OP_push_object_address is not allowed because there is no object context to provide a value to push.

  • DW_OP_LLVM_push_lane is not allowed because the call frame instructions describe the actions for the whole thread, not the lanes independently.

  • DW_OP_call_frame_cfa and DW_OP_entry_value are not allowed because their use would be circular.

  • DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg is not allowed if evaluating E causes a circular dependency between DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg operations.

    For example, if a register R1 has a DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression instruction that evaluates a DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg operation that specifies register R2, and register R2 has a DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression instruction that that evaluates a DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg operation that specifies register R1.

Call frame instructions to which these restrictions apply include DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression, DW_CFA_expression, and DW_CFA_val_expression.

Row Creation Instructions

Note

These instructions are the same as in DWARF Version 5 section 6.4.2.1.

CFA Definition Instructions
  1. DW_CFA_def_cfa

    The DW_CFA_def_cfa instruction takes two unsigned LEB128 operands representing a register number R and a (non-factored) byte displacement B. AS is set to the target architecture default address space identifier. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_constu AS; DW_OP_aspace_bregx R, B as a location description.

  2. DW_CFA_def_cfa_sf

    The DW_CFA_def_cfa_sf instruction takes two operands: an unsigned LEB128 value representing a register number R and a signed LEB128 factored byte displacement B. AS is set to the target architecture default address space identifier. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_constu AS; DW_OP_aspace_bregx R, B*data_alignment_factor as a location description.

    The action is the same as DW_CFA_def_cfa, except that the second operand is signed and factored.

  3. DW_CFA_def_aspace_cfa New

    The DW_CFA_def_aspace_cfa instruction takes three unsigned LEB128 operands representing a register number R, a (non-factored) byte displacement B, and a target architecture specific address space identifier AS. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_constu AS; DW_OP_aspace_bregx R, B as a location description.

    If AS is not one of the values defined by the target architecture specific DW_ASPACE_* values then the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

  4. DW_CFA_def_aspace_cfa_sf New

    The DW_CFA_def_cfa_sf instruction takes three operands: an unsigned LEB128 value representing a register number R, a signed LEB128 factored byte displacement B, and an unsigned LEB128 value representing a target architecture specific address space identifier AS. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_constu AS; DW_OP_aspace_bregx R, B*data_alignment_factor as a location description.

    If AS is not one of the values defined by the target architecture specific DW_ASPACE_* values, then the DWARF expression is ill-formed.

    The action is the same as DW_CFA_aspace_def_cfa, except that the second operand is signed and factored.

  5. DW_CFA_def_cfa_register

    The DW_CFA_def_cfa_register instruction takes a single unsigned LEB128 operand representing a register number R. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_constu AS; DW_OP_aspace_bregx R, B as a location description. B and AS are the old CFA byte displacement and address space respectively.

    If the subprogram has no current CFA rule, or the rule was defined by a DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression instruction, then the DWARF is ill-formed.

  6. DW_CFA_def_cfa_offset

    The DW_CFA_def_cfa_offset instruction takes a single unsigned LEB128 operand representing a (non-factored) byte displacement B. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_constu AS; DW_OP_aspace_bregx R, B as a location description. R and AS are the old CFA register number and address space respectively.

    If the subprogram has no current CFA rule, or the rule was defined by a DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression instruction, then the DWARF is ill-formed.

  7. DW_CFA_def_cfa_offset_sf

    The DW_CFA_def_cfa_offset_sf instruction takes a signed LEB128 operand representing a factored byte displacement B. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating the DWARF operation expression DW_OP_constu AS; DW_OP_aspace_bregx R, B*data_alignment_factor as a location description. R and AS are the old CFA register number and address space respectively.

    If the subprogram has no current CFA rule, or the rule was defined by a DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression instruction, then the DWARF is ill-formed.

    The action is the same as DW_CFA_def_cfa_offset, except that the operand is signed and factored.

  8. DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression

    The DW_CFA_def_cfa_expression instruction takes a single operand encoded as a DW_FORM_exprloc value representing a DWARF operation expression E. The required action is to define the current CFA rule to be the result of evaluating E with the current context, except the result kind is a location description, the compilation unit is unspecified, the object is unspecified, and an empty initial stack.

    See Call Frame Instructions regarding restrictions on the DWARF expression operations that can be used in E.

    The DWARF is ill-formed if the result of evaluating E is not a memory byte address location description.

Register Rule Instructions
  1. DW_CFA_undefined

    The DW_CFA_undefined instruction takes a single unsigned LEB128 operand that represents a register number R. The required action is to set the rule for the register specified by R to undefined.

  2. DW_CFA_same_value

    The DW_CFA_same_value instruction takes a single unsigned LEB128 operand that represents a register number R. The required action is to set the rule for the register specified by R to same value.

  3. DW_CFA_offset

    The DW_CFA_offset instruction takes two operands: a register number R (encoded with the opcode) and an unsigned LEB128 constant representing a factored displacement B. The required action is to change the rule for the register specified by R to be an offset(B*data_alignment_factor) rule.

    Note

    Seems this should be named DW_CFA_offset_uf since the offset is unsigned factored.

  4. DW_CFA_offset_extended

    The DW_CFA_offset_extended instruction takes two unsigned LEB128 operands representing a register number R and a factored displacement B. This instruction is identical to DW_CFA_offset, except for the encoding and size of the register operand.

    Note

    Seems this should be named DW_CFA_offset_extended_uf since the displacement is unsigned factored.

  5. DW_CFA_offset_extended_sf

    The DW_CFA_offset_extended_sf instruction takes two operands: an unsigned LEB128 value representing a register number R and a signed LEB128 factored displacement B. This instruction is identical to DW_CFA_offset_extended, except that B is signed.

  6. DW_CFA_val_offset

    The DW_CFA_val_offset instruction takes two unsigned LEB128 operands representing a register number R and a factored displacement B. The required action is to change the rule for the register indicated by R to be a val_offset(B*data_alignment_factor) rule.

    Note

    Seems this should be named DW_CFA_val_offset_uf since the displacement is unsigned factored.

    Note

    An alternative is to define DW_CFA_val_offset to implicitly use the target architecture default address space, and add another operation that specifies the address space.

  7. DW_CFA_val_offset_sf

    The DW_CFA_val_offset_sf instruction takes two operands: an unsigned LEB128 value representing a register number R and a signed LEB128 factored displacement B. This instruction is identical to DW_CFA_val_offset, except that B is signed.

  8. DW_CFA_register

    The DW_CFA_register instruction takes two unsigned LEB128 operands representing register numbers R1 and R2 respectively. The required action is to set the rule for the register specified by R1 to be a register(R2) rule.

  9. DW_CFA_expression

    The DW_CFA_expression instruction takes two operands: an unsigned LEB128 value representing a register number R, and a DW_FORM_block value representing a DWARF operation expression E. The required action is to change the rule for the register specified by R to be an expression(E) rule.

    That is, E computes the location description where the register value can be retrieved.

    See Call Frame Instructions regarding restrictions on the DWARF expression operations that can be used in E.

  10. DW_CFA_val_expression

    The DW_CFA_val_expression instruction takes two operands: an unsigned LEB128 value representing a register number R, and a DW_FORM_block value representing a DWARF operation expression E. The required action is to change the rule for the register specified by R to be a val_expression(E) rule.

    That is, E computes the value of register R.

    See Call Frame Instructions regarding restrictions on the DWARF expression operations that can be used in E.

    If the result of evaluating E is not a value with a base type size that matches the register size, then the DWARF is ill-formed.

  11. DW_CFA_restore

    The DW_CFA_restore instruction takes a single operand (encoded with the opcode) that represents a register number R. The required action is to change the rule for the register specified by R to the rule assigned it by the initial_instructions in the CIE.

  12. DW_CFA_restore_extended

    The DW_CFA_restore_extended instruction takes a single unsigned LEB128 operand that represents a register number R. This instruction is identical to DW_CFA_restore, except for the encoding and size of the register operand.

Row State Instructions

Note

These instructions are the same as in DWARF Version 5 section 6.4.2.4.

Padding Instruction

Note

These instructions are the same as in DWARF Version 5 section 6.4.2.5.

Call Frame Instruction Usage

Note

The same as in DWARF Version 5 section 6.4.3.

Call Frame Calling Address

Note

The same as in DWARF Version 5 section 6.4.4.

Data Representation

32-Bit and 64-Bit DWARF Formats

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 7.4.

  1. Within the body of the .debug_info section, certain forms of attribute value depend on the choice of DWARF format as follows. For the 32-bit DWARF format, the value is a 4-byte unsigned integer; for the 64-bit DWARF format, the value is an 8-byte unsigned integer.

    .debug_info section attribute form roles
    Form Role
    DW_FORM_line_strp offset in .debug_line_str
    DW_FORM_ref_addr offset in .debug_info
    DW_FORM_sec_offset offset in a section other than .debug_info or .debug_str
    DW_FORM_strp offset in .debug_str
    DW_FORM_strp_sup offset in .debug_str section of supplementary object file
    DW_OP_call_ref offset in .debug_info
    DW_OP_implicit_pointer offset in .debug_info
    DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer offset in .debug_info

Format of Debugging Information

Attribute Encodings

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 7.5.4 and Table 7.5.

The following table gives the encoding of the additional debugging information entry attributes.

Attribute encodings
Attribute Name Value Classes
DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane 0x3e08 exprloc, loclist
DW_AT_LLVM_augmentation 0x3e09 string
DW_AT_LLVM_lanes 0x3e0a constant
DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc 0x3e0b exprloc, loclist
DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size 0x3e0c constant

DWARF Expressions

Note

Rename DWARF Version 5 section 7.7 to reflect the unification of location descriptions into DWARF expressions.

Operation Expressions

Note

Rename DWARF Version 5 section 7.7.1 and delete section 7.7.2 to reflect the unification of location descriptions into DWARF expressions.

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 7.7.1 and Table 7.9.

The following table gives the encoding of the additional DWARF expression operations.

DWARF Operation Encodings
Operation Code Number of Operands Notes
DW_OP_LLVM_form_aspace_address 0xe1 0  
DW_OP_LLVM_push_lane 0xe2 0  
DW_OP_LLVM_offset 0xe3 0  
DW_OP_LLVM_offset_uconst 0xe4 1 ULEB128 byte displacement
DW_OP_LLVM_bit_offset 0xe5 0  
DW_OP_LLVM_call_frame_entry_reg 0xe6 1 ULEB128 register number
DW_OP_LLVM_undefined 0xe7 0  
DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_bregx 0xe8 2 ULEB128 register number, ULEB128 byte displacement
DW_OP_LLVM_aspace_implicit_pointer 0xe9 2 4-byte or 8-byte offset of DIE, SLEB128 byte displacement
DW_OP_LLVM_piece_end 0xea 0  
DW_OP_LLVM_extend 0xeb 2 ULEB128 bit size, ULEB128 count
DW_OP_LLVM_select_bit_piece 0xec 2 ULEB128 bit size, ULEB128 count
Location List Expressions

Note

Rename DWARF Version 5 section 7.7.3 to reflect that location lists are a kind of DWARF expression.

Source Languages

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 7.12 and Table 7.17.

The following table gives the encoding of the additional DWARF languages.

Language encodings
Language Name Value Default Lower Bound
DW_LANG_LLVM_HIP 0x8100 0

Address Class and Address Space Encodings

Note

This replaces DWARF Version 5 section 7.13.

The encodings of the constants used for the currently defined address classes are given in Address class encodings.

Address class encodings
Address Class Name Value
DW_ADDR_none 0x0000
DW_ADDR_LLVM_global 0x0001
DW_ADDR_LLVM_constant 0x0002
DW_ADDR_LLVM_group 0x0003
DW_ADDR_LLVM_private 0x0004
DW_ADDR_LLVM_lo_user 0x8000
DW_ADDR_LLVM_hi_user 0xffff

Line Number Information

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 7.22 and Table 7.27.

The following table gives the encoding of the additional line number header entry formats.

Line number header entry format encodings
Line number header entry format name Value
DW_LNCT_LLVM_source 0x2001
DW_LNCT_LLVM_is_MD5 0x2002

Call Frame Information

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 section 7.24 and Table 7.29.

The following table gives the encoding of the additional call frame information instructions.

Call frame instruction encodings
Instruction High 2 Bits Low 6 Bits Operand 1 Operand 2 Operand 3
DW_CFA_def_aspace_cfa 0 0x30 ULEB128 register ULEB128 offset ULEB128 address space
DW_CFA_def_aspace_cfa_sf 0 0x31 ULEB128 register SLEB128 offset ULEB128 address space

Attributes by Tag Value (Informative)

Note

This augments DWARF Version 5 Appendix A and Table A.1.

The following table provides the additional attributes that are applicable to debugger information entries.

Attributes by tag value
Tag Name Applicable Attributes
DW_TAG_base_type
  • DW_AT_LLVM_vector_size
DW_TAG_compile_unit
  • DW_AT_LLVM_augmentation
DW_TAG_entry_point
  • DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane
  • DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc
  • DW_AT_LLVM_lanes
DW_TAG_inlined_subroutine
  • DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane
  • DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc
  • DW_AT_LLVM_lanes
DW_TAG_subprogram
  • DW_AT_LLVM_active_lane
  • DW_AT_LLVM_lane_pc
  • DW_AT_LLVM_lanes

Examples

The AMD GPU specific usage of the features in these extensions, including examples, is available at User Guide for AMDGPU Backend section DWARF Debug Information.

Note

Change examples to use DW_OP_LLVM_offset instead of DW_OP_add when acting on a location description.

Need to provide examples of new features.