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SubjectRe: [patch 1/3] mutex subsystem: trylock
On Thu, 29 Dec 2005, Nick Piggin wrote:

> FWIW, I still think we should go for an open-coded "cmpxchg" variant
> for UP that disables preempt, and an atomic_cmpxchg variant for SMP.
>
> - good generic implementations
> - the UP version is faster than atomic_xchg for non preempt on ARM
> - if you really are counting cycles, you'd probably have preempt off
> - if you've got preempt on then the preempt_ operations in semaphores
> would be the least of your worries (how about spinlocks?)
>
> Rather than straight out introducing lots of ugliness and complexity
> for something that actually slows down the speed critical !preempt
> case (but is unlikely to be measurable either way).

I provided you with the demonstration last week:

- the non SMP (ARM version < 6) is using xchg.

- xchg on ARM version < 6 is always faster and smaller than any
preemption disable.

- xchg on ARM is the same size as the smallest solution you may think of
when preemption is disabled and never slower (prove me otherwise? if
you wish).

- all xchg based primitives are "generic" code already.

And I think you didn't look at the overall patch set before talking
about "lots of ugliness", did you? The fact is that the code,
especially the core code, is much cleaner now than it was when
everything was seemingly "generic" since the current work on
architecture abstractions still allows optimizations in a way that is so
much cleaner and controlled than what happened with the semaphore code,
and the debugging code can even take advantage of it without polluting
the core code.

It happens that i386, x86_64 and ARM (if v6 or above) currently have
their own tweaks to save space and/or cycles in a pretty strictly
defined way. The effort is currently spent on making sure if other
architectures want to use one of their own tricks for those they can do
it without affecting the core code which remains 95% of the whole thing
(which is not the case for semaphores), and the currently provided
architecture specific versions are _never_ bigger nor slower than any
generic version would be. Otherwise what would be the point?


Nicolas
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