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SubjectRe: [PATCH] local_irq_disable removal
On Sat, 11 Jun 2005, Ingo Molnar wrote:

>
> * Esben Nielsen <simlo@phys.au.dk> wrote:
>
> > > Plus take into
> > > account that the average interrupt disable section is very small .. I
> > > also think it's possible to extend my version to allow those section to
> > > be preemptible but keep the cost equally low.
> > >
> >
> > The more I think about it the more dangerous I think it is. What does
> > local_irq_disable() protect against? All local threads as well as
> > irq-handlers. If these sections keeped mutual exclusive but preemtible
> > we will not have protected against a irq-handler.
>
> one way to make it safe/reviewable is to runtime warn if
> local_irq_disable() is called from a !preempt_count() section. But this
> will uncover quite some code.


> There's some code in the VM, in the
> buffer-cache, in the RCU code - etc. that uses per-CPU data structures
> and assumes non-preemptability of local_irq_disable().
>
For me it is perfectly ok if RCU code, buffer caches etc use
raw_local_irq_disable(). I consider that code to be "core" code.

> > I will start to play around with the following:
> > 1) Make local_irq_disable() stop compiling to see how many we are really
> > talking about.
>
> there are roughly 100 places:
>
> $ objdump -d vmlinux | grep -w call |
> grep -wE 'local_irq_disable|local_irq_save' | wc -l
> 116
>
> the advantage of having such primitives as out-of-line function calls :)

But many of those might be called from inline functions :-)

>
> > 2) Make local_cpu_lock, which on PREEMPT_RT is a rt_mutex and on
> > !PREEMPT_RT turns into local_irq_disable()/enable() pairs. To introduce
> > this will demand some code-analyzing for each case but I am afraid there
> > is no general one-size solution to all the places.
>
> I'm not sure we'd gain much from this. Lets assume we have a highprio RT
> task that is waiting for an external event. Will it be able to preempt
> the IRQ mutex? Yes. Will it be able to make any progress: no, because
> it needs an IRQ thread to run to get the wakeup in the first place, and
> the IRQ thread needs to take the IRQ mutex => serialization.
>

That is exactly my point: We can't make a per-cpu mutex to replace
local_irq_disable(). We have to make real lock for each subsystem now
relying on local_irq_disable(). A global lock will not work. We could have
a temporary lock all non-RT can share but that would be a hack similar to
BKL.

The current soft-irq states only gives us better hard-irq latency but
nothing else. I think the overhead runtime and the complication of the
code is way too big for gaining only that.

What is the aim of PREEMPT_RT? Low irq-latency, low task latency or
determnistic task latency? The soft irq-state helps on the first but
harms the two others indirectly by introducing extra overhead. To be
honest I think that approach should be abandoned.

> what seems a better is to rewrite per-CPU-local-irq-disable users to
> make use of the DEFINE_PER_CPU_LOCKED/per_cpu_locked/get_cpu_lock
> primitives to use preemptible per-CPU data structures. In this case
> these sections would be truly preemptible. I've done this for a couple
> of cases already, where it was unavoidable for lock-dependency reasons.
>

I'll continue that work then but in a way where !PREEMPT_RT will make it
back into local-irq-disable such it wont hurt performance there.

I.e. I will try to make a macro system, and try to turn references to
local_irq_disable() into these - or raw_local_irq_disable().

> Ingo
>
Esben


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