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SubjectRe: Updated MSI Patches
> Is there any way to dynamically detect if hardware can support MSI?
> The MSI patch dynamically detects whether hardware devices can support
> MSI once the CONFIG_PCI_MSI is set during kernel built.

> So why would we ever want CONFIG_PCI_MSI to not be set? I'm just
> trying to make options dynamically happen without users having to
> worry about setting a kernel option or not.

> If you enable this option, will boxes that do not support it stop
> working? Once users enable this option, all devices that do not
> support MSI are still working. These devices are by default using
> IRQ pin assertion as interrupt generated mechanism since all
> pre-assigned vectors to any enabled IOxAPICs are reserved.

> Good, so we can always enable this option, so it doesn't even need
> to be an option :)
Agree. Will eliminate CONFIG_PCI_MSI to make this option dynamically

> A driver has to be modified to use this option, right? Do you have
> any drivers that have been modified? Without that, I don't think we
> can test this patch out, right?
> MSI support may be transparent to some device drivers.

> Yet you provide an api for drivers to use, right? Why would a driver
> want to use this api instead of just having the hardware work properly
> on its own? I guess I'm confused as to how to modify drivers to
> support this, or if that's even needed to be done.
There are two types of MSI capable devices: one supports the MSI
capability structure and other supports the MSI-X capability structure.
The patches provide two APIs msix_alloc_vectors/msix_free_vectors for
only devices, which support the MSI-X capability structure, to request
for additional messages. By default, each MSI/MSI-X capable device
function is allocated with one vector for below reasons:
- To achieve a backward compatibility with existing drivers if possible.
- Due to the current implementation of vector assignment, all devices
that support the MSI-capability structure work with no more than one
allocated vector.
- The hardware devices, which support the MSI-X capability structure,
may indicate the maximum capable number of vectors supported (32
vectors as example). However, the device drivers may require only
four. With provided APIs, the optimization of MSI vector allocation
is achievable.

The existing driver is required to be modified if and only if its
hardware/software synchronization is not provided; that means, the
hardware device may generate multiple messages from the same vector.
These messages may be lost; the results may be unpredictable. To
overcome this issue, the existing driver driver requires to provide
the hardware/software synchronization to ask its hardware device to
generate one message at a time.

> > +++ linux-2.6.0-test2-create-vectorbase/include/asm-i386/mach-default/irq_vectors.h 2003-08-05 09:25:54.000000000 -0400
> > @@ -76,9 +76,14 @@
> > * Since vectors 0x00-0x1f are used/reserved for the CPU,
> > * the usable vector space is 0x20-0xff (224 vectors)
> > */
> > +#define NR_VECTORS 256
> >Will this _always_ be the value? Can boxes have bigger numbers (I
> >haven't seen the spec, so I don't know...)
> Yes, this will always be 256 since the current CPU architecture
> supports a maximum of 256 vectors.

> The "current" one does. What happens in a few months when I go to help
> bring up the next gen hardware platform? Will I run into the problem
> that this number needs to be increased? Can we determine it at
> run-time?
I hope there may be a way to determine the number of vectors supported
by CPU during the run-time. I look at the file ../include/asm-i386/mach-
default/irq_vectors.h, the maximum of vectors (256) is already well

> > +u32 device_nomsi_list[DRIVER_NOMSI_MAX] = {0, };
> >Shouldn't this be static?
> > +u32 device_msi_list[DRIVER_NOMSI_MAX] = {0, };
> >Same with this one?
> In the initial design draft, I am thinking of defining
> DRIVER_NOMSI_MAX as 32 since it may be impossible to have more than 32
> MSI capable devices populated in the same system. I will add some
> comments to it and look forward for your comments.

> Um, I ment the variable is in the global symbol table, and it doesn't
> look like it needs to be.

> But your comment about number of devices is also a good one. Any way
> we can figure that out at run-time too? What happens when I hot-add
> the 33 MSI capable device? Or just boot with that many devices (I've
> seen boxes with 100s of pci devices all attached to one system)?
The defined variable DRIVER_NOMSI_MAX in device_msi_list[] and
device_nomsi_list[] are used to serve mainly as debug purposes since
most IHVs have not yet validated their hardware devices. If one of
the system has more than 32 MSI capable devices, users can enable MSI
on all devices by default (by setting CONFIG_PCI_MSI_ON_SPECIFIC_DEVICES
to 'n') and use boot parameter "device_nomsi=" to disable some devices,
which have bugs in MSI. In summary, there are two options provided:
Option 1: Enable MSI on all MSI capable devices by default and use boot
parameter "device_nomsi=" to disable specific devices, which have bugs
in MSI.
This option is selected by setting CONFIG_PCI_MSI_ON_SPECIFIC_DEVICES to
'n'. Note that if this option is chosen, then the use of "device_msi="
is no longer necessary.
Option 2 (default): Enable individual MSI capable devices as validation
purpose by using the boot parameter "device_msi=" to select which
devices the kernel supports MSI. Note that if this option is chosen,
then the use of "device_nomsi" id no longer necessary. This is by
default because users may not know how many MSI capable devices
populated in their systems and how many of these have bugs in MSI.

Either one of these options is chosen, I do not think you have any
issue of hot-adding the 33 MSI capable device.

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