Interpret Results

When the sample application exits, the Intel® VTune™ Amplifier finalizes the results and opens the Hotspots by CPU Usage viewpoint where each window or pane is configured to display code regions that consumed a lot of CPU time. To interpret the data on the sample code performance, do the following:

  1. Explore application-level performance.

  2. Analyze the most time-consuming functions.

  3. Identify the hotspot code region.


The screenshots and execution time data provided in this tutorial are created on a system with 4 CPU cores. Your data may vary depending on the number and type of CPU cores on your system.

Explore Application-level Performance

Start analysis with the Summary window that opens by default when data collection completes. To interpret the data, hover over the question mark icons to read the pop-up help and better understand what each performance metric means.

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The Elapsed Time metric shows the duration of the collection including Paused Time. You may use this metric as one of the basic performance indicators.

Note that CPU Time for the sample application is equal to 181.025 seconds. It is the sum of CPU time for all application threads. Total Thread Count is 16, so the sample application is multi-threaded.

The nqueens_parallel.exe application uses the OpenMP* threading model. VTune Amplifier analyzes performance in OpenMP parallel regions as well as serial code performance. The OpenMP Analysis section provides metrics based on the Collection Time, which is the wall time from the beginning to the end of collection, excluding Paused Time. The nqueens_parallel.exe application ran serially only 0.280 seconds, which is 2.1% of Collection Time. Though, according to the provided estimates, you can still improve the efficiency of your code in parallel regions and get 2.216 seconds of performance gain (maximum estimate), which is 16.7% of Collection Time.

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The Top OpenMP Regions by Potential Gain section displays the parallel region in the nqueens_parallel.exe application that should be optimized.

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Clicking this region opens the Bottom-up window with the data grouped by OpenMP Region and detailed statistics for the hot regions.

The Top Hotspots section of the Summary window provides data on the most time-consuming functions (hotspot functions) sorted by CPU time spent on their execution.

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For the sample application, the NQUEENS_ip_SETQUEEN function, which took 160.962 seconds to execute, shows up at the top of the list as the hottest function.

The [Others] entry at the bottom shows the sum of CPU time for all functions not listed in the table.

Analyze the Most Time-consuming Functions

Click the NQUEENS_ip_SETQUEEN function to view detailed statistics for the hotspot function in the Bottom-up window. By default, the data in the grid is grouped by Function/Call Stack.

Analyze the CPU Time column values. This column is marked with a yellow star as the Data of Interest column. It means that the VTune Amplifier uses this type of data for some calculations (for example, filtering, stack contribution, and others). Functions that took most CPU time to execute are listed on top.

The NQUEENS_ip_SETQUEEN function took 160.962 seconds to execute.

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Double-click the hotspot function to open the source and identify the most time-critical code lines.

Identify the Hotspot Code Region

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The table below explains some of the features available in the Source window when viewing the Basic Hotspots analysis data.


Source pane displaying the source code of the application if the function symbol information is available. The hottest code line is highlighted. The source code in the Source pane is not editable.

If the function symbol information is not available, the Assembly pane opens displaying assembler instructions for the selected hotspot function. To enable the Source pane, make sure to build the target properly.


Processor time attributed to a particular code line. If the hotspot is a system function, its time, by default, is attributed to the user function that called this system function.


Source window toolbar. Use the hotspot navigation buttons to switch between most performance-critical code lines. Hotspot navigation is based on the metric column selected as a Data of Interest. For the Basic Hotspots analysis, this is CPU Time. Use the Source/Assembly buttons to toggle the Source/Assembly panes (if both of them are available) on/off.


Heat map markers to quickly identify performance-critical code lines (hotspots). The bright blue markers indicate hot lines for the function you selected for analysis. Light blue markers indicate hot lines for other functions. Scroll to a marker to locate the hot code line it identifies.

By default, when you double-click the hotspot in the Bottom-up pane, the VTune Amplifier opens the source file related to this function with the hottest code line highlighted. For the NQUEENS_ip_SETQUEEN function, this is the code line that is used to create a local copy of the queens array to avoid a data race. Click the Source Editor button on the Source window toolbar to open the default code editor and work on optimizing the code.


Depending on the sample code version, your source line numbers may slightly differ from the numbers provided in this tutorial.

Key Terms

Next Step

Resolve Issue

For more complete information about compiler optimizations, see our Optimization Notice.