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SubjectRe: [PATCH] arp_queue: serializing unlink + kfree_skb
On Fri, 4 Feb 2005 12:20:53 +1100
Herbert Xu <herbert@gondor.apana.org.au> wrote:

> This is true if CPU 0 reads the count before reading skb->list.
> Without a memory barrier, atomic_read and reading skb->list can
> be reordered. Put it another way, reading skb->list could return
> a cached value that was read from the main memory prior to the
> atomic_read.
>
> So in order for CPU 0 to always see an up-to-date value of skb->list,
> it needs to do an smp_rmb() between the atomic_read and reading
> skb->list.

You're absolutely right. Ok, so we do need to change kfree_skb().
I believe even with the memory barrier, the atomic_read() optimization
is still worth it. atomic ops on sparc64 take a minimum of 40 some odd
cycles on UltraSPARC-III and later, whereas the memory barrier will
take up a single cycle most of the time.

So it'll look something like:

if (atomic_read(&skb->users) == 1)
smb_rmb();
else if (!atomic_dec_and_test(&skb->users))
return;
__kfree_skb(skb);
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