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SubjectRe: Why can't we sleep in an ISR?
OK. I think the gap between you and me is the definition of term
*context*. If you go to Linux Kernel Development, 2nd Edition (ISBN
0-672-32720-1), Page 6, then you will read the following:

.... in Linux, ... each processor is doing one of three things at any
given moment:

1. In kernel-space, in process context, ...
2. In kernel-space, in interrupt context, not associated with a process, ...
3. In user-space ...

This list is inclusive. ...

Maybe you prefer other terminology system, but I do like the above
definition given by Robert Love. So maybe in your system *context*
mean something at hardware level and you say ISR is in process
context, but I think it is more like a logical level and agree with
Rovert's definition.

And in hardware level, Robert's *context* definition also mean
something specific, that I started to be aware of. That is, *in the
same context* means a kernel-code is triggered by a user-space code.
*in different context* means a kernel-code is triggered by an external
interrupt source other than a user-space code.

Context has nothing to do with whether an ISR borrow any data
structure of a process, instead, its something logical or related to

2007/5/16, Phillip Susi <>:
> Dong Feng wrote:
> > If what you say were true, then an ISR would be running in the same
> > context as the interrupted process.
> Yes, and it is, as others have said in this thread, which is a good
> reason why ISRs can't sleep.
> > But please check any article or
> > book, it will say ISR running in different context from any process.
> > So ISR is considered in its own context, although it shares a lot of
> > things with the interrupted process. I would only say *context* is a
> > higher-level logical concept.
> Depends on which book or article you are reading I suppose. The
> generally accepted and often used thought is that ISRs technically are
> running in the context of the interrupted process, but because that
> context is unknown and therefore should not be used, it is often said
> that they run in no context, or outside of any context. Sometimes
> people then assume that because they run outside of any ( particular )
> process context, they must be in their own context, but this is a mistake.
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