Bus Hound may be the
very first product of its kind -- a software bus analyzer for
capturing device I/O and protocol. Below is a sample screen shot showing
commands sent to a CD-ROM drive:
Pricing and Availability
Bus Hound was first
released on April 26th, 2000. The product may be purchased
securely online directly from Perisoft using a credit card. The product
is delivered by electronic download. The download size is less than one
megabyte. The cost of a Bus Hound license is $799 US dollars per
user. Each user may run the product on an unlimited number of machines.
A site license may be purchased for $4995 US dollars, which allows
every employee at a site to use the product.
Bus Hound runs under
95, 98, Millennium, NT 4, 2000 and XP. No extra hardware or changes to
the system are needed; Bus Hound is strictly a software product.
Bus Hound supports
every device that can be attached to IDE, SCSI, USB, 1394 and
Fibre Channel buses. This includes disk drives,
DVD drives, mice, digital cameras, scanners and web cams.
Captures megabytes of I/O at a time. The capture
depth can be set starting from 1K up to available system RAM in
Measures device performance.
I/O from multiple devices can be captured
simultaneously, even if devices are attached to different buses.
There is no limit on how many machines can run the
product in parallel.
The system startup process can be captured, allowing
capture of the very first commands sent to a device.
In addition to data transfers, low-level protocol is captured
such as sense data and operating system status information. This
information can be used to efficiently trouble shoot device driver or
Microsecond resolution timing is captured. This
allows the time between commands to be measured as well as the elapsed
time of a single command.
Captured data can be viewed in real time, dragged
and dropped to other applications, or saved to a text or zip file.
When the capture buffer fills to capacity, Bus Hound
can be configured to stop the capture process or continue capturing,
keeping the most recent acquired data.
The capture depth of each individual I/O phase can
be configured from 1 byte up to 2GB in 1-byte increments. For instance,
if the capture depth is set to 8 bytes, only the first 8 bytes of each
packet will be captured.
A simple web-like interface. Devices are selected
simply by placing a checkmark next to them in a graphical tree.
Windows Logo compliant. Bus Hound
includes an installer, uninstaller, automatically migrates to new
operating systems, has keyboard support, is designed to run in a multi
processor environment and passes rigorous stability tests.
Individual Bus Features
USB: Bus Hound captures all 4 transfer
types--control, bulk, interrupt, and isochronous. Bus Hound supports all
USB versions and speeds including USB 2.0. Bus Hound also shows the USB
endpoint each transfer is sent to.
IDE: Bus Hound captures command and data
transfers for ATA and ATAPI devices. All PIO and DMA modes are supported
such as Ultra/133. Bus Hound also captures SMART commands to hard
Bus Hound captures the command and data phases for all parallel and
serial bus standards. Bus Hound decodes the command op codes and logs
sense data for check conditions.
1394: Bus Hound captures read/write/lock
operations, isochronous transfers and bus resets. All 1394 versions and
speeds are supported.
Other buses: Bus Hound supports device
configurations where one of the above buses is emulated. Examples
include virtual devices or certain parallel port attached devices.
Command Line Tool
The site license version of Bus Hound includes
bhlog.exe, a command line tool that allows capturing traces directly to
a file. Comparatively, the Bus Hound GUI captures to RAM. Since
bhlog is limited only by free hard drive
space, it provides the capability to capture I/O over tremendously wide
time periods. The other advantage of bhlog
is the ability to retain captured data in the event a system freezes or
reboots by directing the captured data to a file on a network drive.
Bus Hound is
targeted to expand the market for bus analyzers.
Bus Hound captures snap shots of packets sent across the bus rather than
individual hardware signals.
Users will find Bus Hound a very capable bus analyzer for their needs or
may find it complementary to a hardware bus analyzer. Its low cost and simplicity of
operation makes it attractive to users who otherwise would not want a
hardware bus analyzer. Since it runs on the host, it can also be more
effective for analyzing host side problems. Bus Hound has a number of pricing advantages over
The cost is a fraction of a hardware bus analyzer.
Includes support for each bus, eliminating the
need to purchase add-on modules or new bus analyzers for different
Automatically supports incremental bus standards.
Higher bus speeds and added bus features are transparent to Bus Hound
since it is built on a layered software architecture.
Runs on an unlimited number of machines, eliminating
the need to purchase multiple hardware bus analyzers in order to perform captures
Hound captures I/O using a device driver. The device driver is
positioned very low in the I/O subsystem architecture such that it can
take an accurate snapshot of commands, data, status, and timing
information. The below figure demonstrates how Bus Hound captures data
for SCSI devices.