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SubjectRe: [PATCH 0/2] resource control file system - aka containers on top of nsproxy!
On Tue, Mar 06, 2007 at 06:32:07PM -0800, Paul Menage wrote:
> I'm not really sure that I see the value of having this be part of
> nsproxy rather than the previous independent container (and
> container_group) structure.


I wrote the patch mainly to see whether the stuff container folks (Sam Vilain
et al) were complaining abt (that container structure abstraction
inside the kernel is redundant/unnecessary) made sense or not.

The rcfs patches demonstrate that it is possible to implement resource control
on top of just nsproxy -and- give the same interface that you now
have. In essense, I would say that the rcfs patches are about 70% same as your
original V7 container patches.

However as I am converting over cpusets to work on top of nsproxy, I
have learnt few things:

container structure in your patches provides for these things:

a. A way to group tasks
b. A way to maintain several hierarchies of such groups

If you consider just a. then I agree that container abstraction is
redundant, esp for vserver resource control (nsproxy can already be used
to group tasks).

What nsproxy doesn't provide is b - a way to represent hierarchies of

So we got several choices here.

1. Introduce the container abstraction as is in your patches
2. Extend nsproxy somehow to represent hierarchies
3. Let individual resource controllers that -actually- support
hierarchical resource management maintain hierarchy in their code.

In the last option, nsproxy still is unaware of any hierarchy. Some of
the resource objects it points to (for ex: cpuset) may maintain a
hierarchy. For ex: nsproxy->ctlr_data[cpuset_subsys.subsys_id] points to
a 'struct cpuset' structure which could maintains the hierarchical
relationship among cpuset objects.

If we consider that most resource controllers may not implement hierarchical
resource management, then 3 may not be a bad compromise. OTOH if we
expect *most* resource controllers to support hierarchical resource
management, then we could be better of with option 1.

Anyway, summarizing on "why nsproxy", the main point (I think) is about
using existing abstraction in the kernel.

> As far as I can see, you're putting the
> container subsystem state pointers and the various task namespace
> pointers into the same structure (nsproxy) but then they're remaining
> pretty much independent in terms of code.
> The impression that I'm getting (correct me if I'm wrong) is:
> - when you do a mkdir within an rcfs directory, the nsproxy associated
> with the parent is duplicated, and then each rcfs subsystem gets to
> set a subsystem-state pointer in that nsproxy


> - when you move a task into an rcfs container, you create a new
> nsproxy consisting of the task's old namespaces and its new subsystem
> pointers. Then you look through the current list of nsproxy objects to
> see if you find one that matches. If you do, you reuse it, else you
> create a new nsproxy and link it into the list


> - when you do sys_unshare() or a clone that creates new namespaces,
> then the task (or its child) will get a new nsproxy that has the rcfs
> subsystem state associated with the old nsproxy, and one or more
> namespace pointers cloned to point to new namespaces. So this means
> that the nsproxy for the task is no longer the nsproxy associated with
> any directory in rcfs. (So the task will disappear from any "tasks"
> file in rcfs?)

it "should" disappear yes, although I haven't carefully studied the
unshare requirements yet.

> You seem to have lost some features, including fork/exit subsystem callbacks

That was mainly to keep it simple for a proof-of-concept patch! We can add it
back later.

> >What follows is the core (big) patch and the cpu_acct subsystem to serve
> >as an example of how to use it. I suspect we can make cpusets also work
> >on top of this very easily.
> I'd like to see that. I suspect it will be a bit more fiddly than the
> simple cpu_acct subsystem.

I am almost done with the conversion. And yes cpuset is a beast to
convert over! Will test and send the patches out tomorrow.

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