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SubjectRe: Need better is_better_time_interpolator() algorithm
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On Thu, 2005-08-25 at 10:36 -0700, john stultz wrote:
> On Thu, 2005-08-25 at 10:44 -0600, Alex Williamson wrote:
> > How can we munge these all together to come up with a single goodness
> > factor for comparison? There's probably a thesis covering algorithms to
> > handle this. Anyone know of one or have some good ideas? Thanks,
>
> With my timeofday rework code, the timesource structure (which was
> influenced by the time interpolators) just uses a fixed "priority" vale.
...
> Realistically I don't think too many systems will have multiple out of
> tree timesources, so assigning the correct priority value shouldn't be
> too difficult.
>
> This just seemed a bit more straight forward then sorting out some
> weighting algorithm for their properties to select the best timesource.

I don't know that it's that uncommon. Simply having one non-arch
specific timer is enough to need to decided whether it's better than a
generic timer. I assume pretty much every arch has a cycle timer. For
smaller boxes, this might be the preferred timer given it's latency even
if something like an hpet exists (mmio access are expensive). How do
you hard code a value that can account for that? I agree, we could
easily go too far and produce some bloated algorithm, but maybe it's
simply a weighted product of a few variables.

To start with, what would this do:

(frequency) * (1/drift) * (1/latency) * (1/(jitter_factor * cpus))

Something this simple at least starts to dynamically bring the factors
together. All else being equal (and with no weighting), this would give
the 1.5GHz/750ppm timer a higher priority than the 250MHz/500ppm timer.
Is that good? I like your idea to make this user tunable after boot,
but I still think there has to be a way to make a smarter decision up
front. Thanks,

Alex

--
Alex Williamson HP Linux & Open Source Lab

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