Escape-Analysis Flaws

Escape-Analysis Flaws

Prelude It will be helpful to read this four-part series first on escape analysis and data semantics. Details on how to read an escape analysis report and pprof output have been outlined here.

Prelude

It will be helpful to read this four-part series first on escape analysis and data semantics. Details on how to read an escape analysis report and pprof output have been outlined here.

Introduction

Even after working with Go for 4 years, I am continually amazed by the language. Thanks to the static code analysis the compiler performs, the compiler can apply interesting optimizations to the code it produces. One type of analysis the compiler performs is called escape analysis. This produces optimizations and simplifications around memory management.

The language team has been focused for the past 2 years on optimizing the code the compiler produces for better performance and they have done a fantastic job. I believe Go programs could see even more dramatic improvements if some of the current flaws in escape analysis are resolved. Back in February 2015, Dmitry Vyukov wrote this paper outlining known escape analysis flaws in the compiler.

I was curious about how many of these flaws had been fixed since this document was written and I found that so far a few have been resolved. That being said, five particular flaws have not been fixed that I would love to see worked on in a near future release of Go. I label these as:

  • Indirect Assignment
  • Indirect Call
  • Slice and Map Assignments
  • Interfaces
  • Unknown

I thought it would be fun to explore each of these flaws so you can see the positive impact existing Go programs will have once they are fixed. Everything you see is based on the 1.9 compiler.

data analysis

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