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SubjectRe: [Bug #11342] Linux 2.6.27-rc3: kernel BUG at mm/vmalloc.c - bisected
Date
On Wednesday 27 August 2008 02:51:46 Linus Torvalds wrote:
> On Tue, 26 Aug 2008, Yinghai Lu wrote:
> > wonder if could use "unsigned long *" directly.
>
> I would actually suggest something like this:
>
> - we continue to have a magic "cpumask_t".
>
> - we do different cases for big and small NR_CPUS:
>
> #if NR_CPUS <= BITS_PER_LONG
>
> /*
> * Make it an array - that way passing it as an argument will
> * always pass it as a pointer!
> */
> typedef unsigned long cpumask_t[1];
>
> static inline void create_cpumask(cpumask_t *p)
> {
> *p = 0;
> }
> static inline void free_cpumask(cpumask_t *p)
> {
> }
>
> #else
>
> typedef unsigned long *cpumask_t;
>
> static inline void create_cpumask(cpumask_t *p)
> {
> *p = kcalloc(..);
> }
>
> static inline void free_cpumask(cpumask_t *p)
> {
> kfree(*p);
> }
>
> #endif
>
> and now after you do this, you can just do something like
>
> cpumask_t mycpu;
>
> create_cpumask(&mycpu);
> ..
> free_cpumask(&mycpu);
>
> and in between, you can use 'cpumask' as a pointer, because even when it
> is an array directly allocated on the stack, the array can always
> degenerate into a pointer by C type rules!

Hi Linus,

This turns out to be awful in practice, mainly due to const. Consider:

#ifdef CONFIG_CPUMASK_OFFSTACK
typedef unsigned long *cpumask_t;
#else
typedef unsigned long cpumask_t[1];
#endif

cpumask_t returns_cpumask(void);

That's obviously illegal if cpumask_t is an array. So we need a typedef which
says "really always a pointer".

typedef unsigned long *cpumask_return_t;
cpumask_return_t returns_cpumask(void);

But we usually want it to return a const ptr, and this doesn't work:

const cpumask_return_t returns_cpumask(void);
foo.c:12: warning: type qualifiers ignored on function return type

So now we need:
typedef const unsigned long *cpumask_const_return_t;
cpumask_const_return_t returns_cpumask(void);

OK, now consider a function which wants to take a const cpu bitmap:

void cpus_copy(cpumask_t dst, const cpumask_t src);
...
cpus_copy(cpus, returns_cpumask());
foo.c:34: warning: passing argument 2 of ‘cpus_copy’ discards qualifiers from
pointer target type

Oops, that didn't work with the pointer version. So we need another typedef:
#ifdef CONFIG_CPUMASK_OFFSTACK
typedef const unsigned long *cpumask_const_t;
#else
typedef const unsigned long cpumask_const_t[1];
#endif

void cpus_copy(cpumask_t dst, cpumask_const_t src);

We end up with this:
#ifdef CONFIG_CPUMASK_OFFSTACK
typedef unsigned long *cpumask_t;
typedef const unsigned long *cpumask_const_t;
#else
typedef unsigned long cpumask_t[1];
typedef const unsigned long cpumask_const_t[1];
#endif
typedef unsigned long *cpumask_return_t;
typedef const unsigned long *cpumask_const_return_t;
typedef unsigned long cpumask_data_t[1];

I can't see a neater way down this path, and I don't want to lose const.

I can see three alternatives:
1) An ONSTACK_CPUMASK(name) macro which declares "struct cpumask name[1]" or
"struct cpumask *name". Same idea as yours, without the typedef.
2) Use a normal struct for cpumask, make everyone use pointers, but have an
struct cpumask *alloc_stack_cpumask() which uses alloca() for small
NR_CPUS.
3) Same, but just use kmalloc everywhere. Optimize important cases by hand.

Anyone see a better way?
Rusty.
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