/proc interface is inadequate, unfortunately. When amount of sockets is enough large, netstat or even plain cat /proc/net/tcp/ cause nothing but pains and curses. In linux-2.4 the desease became worse: even if amount of sockets is small reading /proc/net/tcp/ is slow enough.
This utility presents a new approach, which is supposed to scale well. I am not going to describe technical details here and will concentrate on description of the command. The only important thing to say is that it is not so bad idea to load module tcp_diag, which can be found in directory Modules of iproute2. If you do not make this ss will work, but it falls back to /proc and becomes slow like netstat, well, a bit faster yet (see section "Some numbers").