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SubjectRe: [PATCH] Add module_kernel_thread for threads that live in modules.
In message <16110.20088.351260.156860@gargle.gargle.HOWL> you write:
> On Monday June 16, wrote:
> > Hi Neil,
> Hi Rusty. Thanks for the comments... I probably should have Cc:ed you
> in the first place....

Yeah, that does tend to get faster response, but I know some hackers
consider it completely optional 8(

> > There are several problems with this patch. Ignoring the fact
> > that you use __module_get. Firstly, you bump the module count
> > permentantly while the thread is running: how does it ever get
> > unloaded? Secondly, modprobe becomes your parent.
> We seem to have very different views of the problem, as you seem to be
> calling into question aspects that I thought were obviously correct.
> __module_get:
> In all the cases I am interested in (nfsd, lockd,
> lockd-helper-thread), the thread is started by code running
> inside the module and so there will be a reference held on the
> module while the thread is being started, thus __module_get is the
> correct thing to do as "we know we already have a refcount"...

But do you wait for it? Theoretically the init code could have
finished, and someone done rmmod, before this thread gets as far as
__module_get, no?

> module count bumped permananelt while thread is running:
> well ofcourse, the thread runs code in the module which can only
> be done safely while we have a ref-count.

For future reference: this isn't quite true. If a function/thread is
synchronously stopped by the exit code/failed init code then they
don't need to hold a reference count: it still *can* hold a reference
count, which really depends on whether the module should be considered
"in use" by the thread... cf. timers.

> The threads I am thinking of aren't running "whenever the module is
> loaded". They are running "whenever their service is needed".

My bad: I wasn't sure given my (admittedly brief) glance at the code.
Thanks for clarifing!

> modprobe becomes your parent:
> No, modprobe has nothing to do with it in my case. rpc.nfsd, or
> mount_nfs or lockd might be the parent. I thought reparent_to_init
> handled all that. Apparently there are question marks over that
> which I wasn't aware of.

Andrew has been trying to kill it, and I think he's right. In
practical terms, it's much easier to start from a clean environment
than to clean up an unknown one, and keep that cleanup code uptodate.

> I don't want to have to call "cleanup_thread" or de-allocate the
> "struct kthread". I want to be able to SIGKILL a process and have it
> go away and release everything, including possibly the last refernce
> to the module.
> In short, it really feels like we are trying to solve different
> problems :-)

Agreed: threads under their own control are much simpler than ones
under external control.

> I will have a look at keventd and see if it's services can be of
> assistance to solve my problem.

I will think, which usually seems to help me when presented with new
information 8)

Anyone who quotes me in their sig is an idiot. -- Rusty Russell.
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