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SubjectRe: More waitpid issues with CLONE_DETACHED/CLONE_THREAD
On Sat, Jan 31, 2004 at 08:38:43PM -0800, Linus Torvalds wrote:
> On Sat, 31 Jan 2004, Daniel Jacobowitz wrote:
> >
> > This may be related to the python bug reported today...
> Indeed.
> Having a "waitpid(x, .., WNOHANG)" return 0 is a very interesting
> condition. That condition basically guarantees that:
> - the kernel did find the child
> - but the kernel decided that the child cannot be reaped right then.
> If you see the process as a Zombie in a "ps" listing, then we know that
> that isn't the reason why it couldn't be reaped. Can you verify that
> /proc/<pid>/status shows it as "Z (zombie)"?

Yes, it is a zombie when the waitpid is executed.

> In fact, if we see it as "Z (zombie)", we know even more: it means that
> wait_task_zombie() was never called, because that would have started out
> with changing the process state to "X (dead)".
> And that in turn implies that "eligible_child()" would have returned 2.
> Which is a normal occurrence: it happens when a process group leader still
> has threads attached to it. At that point it may be a Zombie, but we can't
> reap it yet. The threads have to go away before the thing can be reaped.
> Can you verify that that process doesn't have any sub-threads? (Again,
> that should be easily visible in /proc/<pid>/task/).

It is quite easily visible - in fact, it's hilarious.

8454 pts/8 Z 0:00 [linux-dp] <defunct>

drow@nevyn:~% ls /proc/8454
auxv cmdline cwd@ environ exe@ fd/ maps mem mounts root@ stat

drow@nevyn:~% ls /proc/8454/task
ls: /proc/8454/task: No such file or directory

What that means I'm not entirely sure.

> Another alternative is that the process is a zombie, but it is being
> traced. When that happens, it shows up on the "ptrace_children" list, and
> we'll see in in wait4(), but we won't be able to reap it.

At this point it is being traced - this is gdbserver. But the same
process that is tracing it is calling waitpid. And the problem
persists after the tracer dies; the process above is actually from a
couple of hours ago, and its tracer was killed.

> Roland, Ingo - have you followed the discussion on linux-kernel? Something
> strange does seem to be going on..

The only two kernels I've tried were 2.6.0-test7 and 2.6.2-rc3, by the
way - same behavior in both. I'll try to write a single program
testcase for this.

Daniel Jacobowitz
MontaVista Software Debian GNU/Linux Developer
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