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    SubjectRe: [PATCH] fix/improve generic page table walker
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    On Thu, 2009-03-12 at 15:42 +0100, Martin Schwidefsky wrote:
    > On Thu, 12 Mar 2009 09:10:14 -0500
    > Matt Mackall <mpm@selenic.com> wrote:
    >
    > > [Nick and Hugh, maybe you can shed some light on this for me]
    > >
    > > On Thu, 2009-03-12 at 09:33 +0100, Martin Schwidefsky wrote:
    > > > On Wed, 11 Mar 2009 12:24:23 -0500
    > > > Matt Mackall <mpm@selenic.com> wrote:
    > > >
    > > > > On Wed, 2009-03-11 at 14:49 +0100, Martin Schwidefsky wrote:
    > > > > > From: Martin Schwidefsky <schwidefsky@de.ibm.com>
    > > > > >
    > > > > > On s390 the /proc/pid/pagemap interface is currently broken. This is
    > > > > > caused by the unconditional loop over all pgd/pud entries as specified
    > > > > > by the address range passed to walk_page_range. The tricky bit here
    > > > > > is that the pgd++ in the outer loop may only be done if the page table
    > > > > > really has 4 levels. For the pud++ in the second loop the page table needs
    > > > > > to have at least 3 levels. With the dynamic page tables on s390 we can have
    > > > > > page tables with 2, 3 or 4 levels. Which means that the pgd and/or the
    > > > > > pud pointer can get out-of-bounds causing all kinds of mayhem.
    > > > >
    > > > > Not sure why this should be a problem without delving into the S390
    > > > > code. After all, x86 has 2, 3, or 4 levels as well (at compile time) in
    > > > > a way that's transparent to the walker.
    > > >
    > > > Its hard to understand without looking at the s390 details. The main
    > > > difference between x86 and s390 in that respect is that on s390 the
    > > > number of page table levels is determined at runtime on a per process
    > > > basis. A compat process uses 2 levels, a 64 bit process starts with 3
    > > > levels and can "upgrade" to 4 levels if something gets mapped above
    > > > 4TB. Which means that a *pgd can point to a region-second (2**53 bytes),
    > > > a region-third (2**42 bytes) or a segment table (2**31 bytes), a *pud
    > > > can point to a region-third or a segment table. The page table
    > > > primitives know about this semantic, in particular pud_offset and
    > > > pmd_offset check the type of the page table pointed to by *pgd and *pud
    > > > and do nothing with the pointer if it is a lower level page table.
    > > > The only operation I can not "patch" is the pgd++/pud++ operation.
    > >
    > > So in short, sometimes a pgd_t isn't really a pgd_t at all. It's another
    > > object with different semantics that generic code can trip over.
    >
    > Then what exactly is a pgd_t? For me it is the top level page table
    > which can have very different meaning for the various architectures.

    The important thing is that it's always 3 levels removed from the
    bottom, whether or not those 3 levels actually have hardware
    manifestations. From your description, it sounds like that's not how
    things work in S390 land.

    > > Can I get you to explain why this is necessary or even preferable to
    > > doing it the generic way where pgd_t has a fixed software meaning
    > > regardless of how many hardware levels are in play?
    >
    > Well, the hardware can do up to 5 levels of page tables for the full
    > 64 bit address space. With the introduction of pud's we wanted to
    > extend our address space from 3 levels / 42 bits to 4 levels / 53 bits.
    > But this comes at a cost: additional page table levels cost memory and
    > performance. In particular for the compat processes which can only
    > address a maximum of 2 GB it is a waste to allocate 4 levels. With the
    > dynamic page tables we allocate as much as required by each process.

    X86 uses 1-entry tables at higher levels to maintain consistency with
    fairly minimal overhead. In some of the sillier addressing modes, we may
    even use a 4-entry table in some places. I think table size is fixed at
    compile time, but I don't think that's essential. Very little code in
    the x86 architecture has any notion of how many hardware levels actually
    exist.

    --
    http://selenic.com : development and support for Mercurial and Linux




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