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SubjectRe: Multipath failover handling (Was: Re: 2.6.24-rc3-mm1)
James Bottomley wrote:
>>> However, there's still devloss_tmo to consider ... even in
>>> multipath, I don't think you want to signal path failure until
>>> devloss_tmo has fired otherwise you'll get too many transient up/down
>>> events which damage performance if the array has an expensive failover
>>> model.
>> Yes. But currently we have a very high failover latency as we always have
>> to wait for the requeued commands to time-out.
>> Hence we're damaging performance on arrays with inexpensive failover.
> If it's a either/or choice between the two that's showing our current
> approach to multi-path is broken.
>>> The other problem is what to do with in-flight commands at the time the
>>> link went down. With your current patch, they're still stuck until they
>>> time out ... surely there needs to be some type of recovery mechanism
>>> for these?
>> Well, the in-flight commands are owned by the HBA driver, which should
>> have the proper code to terminate / return those commands with the
>> appriopriate codes. They will then be rescheduled and will be caught
>> like 'normal' IO requests.
> But my point is that if a driver goes blocked, those commands will be
> forced to wait the blocked timeout anyway, so your proposed patch does
> nothing to improve the case for dm anyway ... you only avoid commands
> stuck when a device goes blocked if by chance its request queue was
> empty.

How about my patches to use new transport error values and make the
iscsi and fc behave the same.

The problem I think Hannes and I are both trying to solve is this:

1. We do not want to wait for dev_loss_tmo seconds for failover.

2. The FC drivers can hook into fast_io_fail_tmo related callouts and
with that set that tmo to a very low value like a couple of seconds if
they are using multipath, so failovers are fast. However, there is a bug
with where when the fast_io_fail_tmo fires requests that made it to the
driver get failed and returned to the multipath layer, but commands in
the blocked request queue are stuck in there until dev_loss_tmo fires.

With my patches here (need to be rediffed and for FC I need to handle
JamesS's comments about not using a new field for the fast_fail_timeout
state bit):

For FC we can use the fast_io_fail_tmo for fast failovers, and commands
will not get stuck in a blocked queue for dev_loss_tmo seconds because
when the fast_io_fail_tmo fires the target's queues are unblocked and
fc_remote_port_chkready() ready kicks in (iSCSI does the same with the
patches in the links). And with the patches if multipath-tools is
sending its path testing IO it will get a DID_TRANSPORT_* error code
that it can use to make a decent path failing decision with.

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