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SubjectRe: [PATCH] tcp: splice as many packets as possible at once
Hi Eric,

On Fri, Jan 09, 2009 at 04:42:44PM +0100, Eric Dumazet wrote:
> Willy patch makes splice() behaving like tcp_recvmsg(), but we might call
> tcp_cleanup_rbuf() several times, with copied=1460 (for each frame processed)
> I wonder if the right fix should be done in tcp_read_sock() : this is the
> one who should eat several skbs IMHO, if we want optimal ACK generation.
> We break out of its loop at line 1246
> if (!desc->count) /* this test is always true */
> break;
> (__tcp_splice_read() set count to 0, right before calling tcp_read_sock())
> So code at line 1246 (tcp_read_sock()) seems wrong, or pessimistic at least.

That's a very interesting discovery that you made here. I have made
mesurements with this line commented out just to get an idea. The
hardest part was to find a CPU-bound machine. Finally I slowed my
laptop down to 300 MHz (in fact, 600 with throttle 50%, but let's
call that 300). That way, I cannot saturate the PCI-based tg3 and
I can observe the effects of various changes on the data rate.

- original tcp_splice_read(), with "!timeo" : 24.1 MB/s
- modified tcp_splice_read(), without "!timeo" : 32.5 MB/s (+34%)
- original with line #1246 commented out : 34.5 MB/s (+43%)

So you're right, avoiding calling tcp_read_sock() all the time
gives a nice performance boost.

Also, I found that tcp_splice_read() behaves like this when breaking
out of the loop :

while () {
if (break condition)

Which means that when breaking out of the loop on (!timeo)
with ret > 0, we do release_sock/lock_sock/release_sock.

So I tried a minor modification, consisting in moving the
test before release_sock(), and leaving !timeo there with
line #1246 commented out. That's a noticeable winner, as
the data rate went up to 35.7 MB/s (+48%).

Also, in your second mail, you're saying that your change
might return more data than requested by the user. I can't
find why, could you please explain to me, as I'm still quite
ignorant in this area ?


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