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SubjectRe: page fault scalability patch V12 [0/7]: Overview and performance tests
Hugh Dickins wrote:
> On Wed, 1 Dec 2004, Christoph Lameter wrote:
>>Changes from V11->V12 of this patch:
>>- dump sloppy_rss in favor of list_rss (Linus' proposal)
>>- keep up against current Linus tree (patch is based on 2.6.10-rc2-bk14)
>>This is a series of patches that increases the scalability of
>>the page fault handler for SMP. Here are some performance results
>>on a machine with 512 processors allocating 32 GB with an increasing
>>number of threads (that are assigned a processor each).
> Your V12 patches would apply well to 2.6.10-rc3, except that (as noted
> before) your mailer or whatever is eating trailing whitespace: trivial
> patch attached to apply before yours, removing that whitespace so yours
> apply. But what your patches need to apply to would be 2.6.10-mm.
> Your i386 HIGHMEM64G 3level ptep_cmpxchg forgets to use cmpxchg8b, would
> have tested out okay up to 4GB but not above: trivial patch attached.

That looks obviously correct. Probably the reason why Martin was
getting crashes.


> Moving to the main patch, 1/7, the major issue I see there is the way
> do_anonymous_page does update_mmu_cache after setting the pte, without
> any page_table_lock to bracket them together. Obviously no problem on
> architectures where update_mmu_cache is a no-op! But although there's
> been plenty of discussion, particularly with Ben and Nick, I've not
> noticed anything to guarantee that as safe on all architectures. I do
> think it's fine for you to post your patches before completing hooks in
> all the arches, but isn't this a significant issue which needs to be
> sorted before your patches go into -mm? You hazily refer to such issues
> in 0/7, but now you need to work with arch maintainers to settle them
> and show the patches.

Yep, the update_mmu_cache issue is real. There is a parallel problem
that is update_mmu_cache can be called on a pte who's page has since
been evicted and reused. Again, that looks safe on IA64, but maybe
not on other architectures.

It can be solved by moving lru_cache_add to after update_mmu_cache in
all cases but the "update accessed bit" type fault. I solved that by
simply defining that out for architectures that don't need it - a raced
fault will simply get repeated if need be.

> A lesser issue with the reordering in do_anonymous_page: don't you need
> to move the lru_cache_add_active after the page_add_anon_rmap, to avoid
> the very slight chance that vmscan will pick the page off the LRU and
> unmap it before you've counted it in, hitting page_remove_rmap's
> BUG_ON(page_mapcount(page) < 0)?

That's what I had been doing too. Seems to be the right way to go.

> (I do wonder why do_anonymous_page calls mark_page_accessed as well as
> lru_cache_add_active. The other instances of lru_cache_add_active for
> an anonymous page don't mark_page_accessed i.e. SetPageReferenced too,
> why here? But that's nothing new with your patch, and although you've
> reordered the calls, the final page state is the same as before.)
> Where handle_pte_fault does "entry = *pte" without page_table_lock:
> you're quite right to passing down precisely that entry to the fault
> handlers below, but there's still a problem on the 32bit architectures
> supporting 64bit ptes (i386, mips, ppc), that the upper and lower ints
> of entry may be out of synch. Not a problem for do_anonymous_page, or
> anything else relying on ptep_cmpxchg to check; but a problem for
> do_wp_page (which could find !pfn_valid and kill the process) and
> probably others (harder to think through). Your 4/7 patch for i386 has
> an unused atomic get_64bit function from Nick, I think you'll have to
> define a get_pte_atomic macro and use get_64bit in its 64-on-32 cases.

Indeed. This was a real problem for my patch, definitely.

> Hmm, that will only work if you're using atomic set_64bit rather than
> relying on page_table_lock in the complementary places which matter.
> Which I believe you are indeed doing in your 3level set_pte. Shouldn't
> __set_64bit be using LOCK_PREFIX like __get_64bit, instead of lock?

That's what I was wondering. It could be that the actual 64-bit store is
still atomic without the lock prefix (just not the entire rmw), which I
think would be sufficient.

In that case, get_64bit may be able to drop the lock prefix as well.
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