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SubjectRe: [PATCH 2/2] [RFC] fadvise: Add _VOLATILE,_ISVOLATILE, and _NONVOLATILE flags
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On Tue, 2012-02-14 at 16:16 +1100, Dave Chinner wrote:
> On Thu, Feb 09, 2012 at 04:16:33PM -0800, John Stultz wrote:
> > This patch provides new fadvise flags that can be used to mark
> > file pages as volatile, which will allow it to be discarded if the
> > kernel wants to reclaim memory.
> >
> > This is useful for userspace to allocate things like caches, and lets
> > the kernel destructively (but safely) reclaim them when there's memory
> > pressure.
> .....
> > @@ -655,6 +656,8 @@ struct address_space {
> > spinlock_t private_lock; /* for use by the address_space */
> > struct list_head private_list; /* ditto */
> > struct address_space *assoc_mapping; /* ditto */
> > + struct range_tree_node *volatile_root; /* volatile range list */
> > + struct mutex vlist_mutex; /* protect volatile_list */
> > } __attribute__((aligned(sizeof(long))));
>
> So you're adding roughly 32 bytes to every cached inode in the
> system? This will increasing the memory footprint of the inode cache
> by 2-5% (depending on the filesystem). Almost no-one will be using
> this functionality on most inodes that are cached in the system, so
> that seems like a pretty bad trade-off to me...

Yea. Bloating the address_space is a concern I'm aware of, but for the
initial passes I left it to see where folks would rather I keep it.
Pushing the mutex into a range_tree_root structure or something could
cut this down, but I still suspect it won't be loved. Another idea would
be to manage the mapping -> range tree separately via something like a
hash. Do you have any preferences or suggestions here?


> > +static int volatile_shrink(struct shrinker *ignored, struct shrink_control *sc)
> > +{
> > + struct volatile_range *range, *next;
> > + unsigned long nr_to_scan = sc->nr_to_scan;
> > + const gfp_t gfp_mask = sc->gfp_mask;
> > +
> > + /* We might recurse into filesystem code, so bail out if necessary */
> > + if (nr_to_scan && !(gfp_mask & __GFP_FS))
> > + return -1;
> > + if (!nr_to_scan)
> > + return lru_count;
> > +
> > + mutex_lock(&volatile_lru_mutex);
> > + list_for_each_entry_safe(range, next, &volatile_lru_list, lru) {
> > + struct inode *inode = range->mapping->host;
> > + loff_t start, end;
> > +
> > +
> > + start = range->range_node.start * PAGE_SIZE;
> > + end = (range->range_node.end + 1) * PAGE_SIZE - 1;
> > +
> > + /*
> > + * XXX - calling vmtruncate_range from a shrinker causes
> > + * lockdep warnings. Revisit this!
> > + */
> > + vmtruncate_range(inode, start, end);
>
> That function vmtruncate_range, I don't think it does what you think
> it does.
>
> Firstly, it's only implemented for shmfs/tmpfs, so this can't have
> been tested for caching files on any real filesystem. If it's only
> for shm/tmpfs, then the applications cwcan just as easily use their
> own memory for caching their volatile data...

Yep you're right, this started as being shm only, and has only been
tested on tmpfs mounts. In this verison, I had left the shm checks off
so that it could be possibly more generic, but I admittedly haven't
thought that through enough.

> Secondly, vmtruncate_range() is actually a hole punching function,
> not a page cache invalidation function. You should be using
> invalidate_inode_pages2_range() to invalidate and tear down the page
> cache. If you really want to punch holes in files, then you should
> be using the fallocate syscall with direct application control, not
> trying to hide it until memory pressure occurs via fadvise because
> hole punching requires memory for the transactions necessary to run
> extent freeing operations.

Thanks for the tip on invalidate_inode_pages2_range()! I'll look it over
and rework the patch using that.

Thanks so much for the review!
-john





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