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SubjectRe: [PATCH] ia64: prevent irq migration race in __cpu_disable path
On Fri, Feb 06, 2009 at 11:07:42AM -0700, Alex Chiang wrote:
>
> [removing stable@kernel.org for now while we figure this out]
>
> * Paul E. McKenney <paulmck@linux.vnet.ibm.com>:
> > On Fri, Feb 06, 2009 at 09:22:13AM -0700, Alex Chiang wrote:
> > > ---
> > > In my opinion, this is .29 material.
> > >
> > > Sorry for the huge changelog:patch ratio, but this area is tricky
> > > enough that more explanation is better than less, I think.
> > >
> > > Also, I'm still a little troubled by Paul's original patch. What
> > > happens if we're trying to offline the CPEI target? The code in
> > > migrate_platform_irqs() uses cpu_online_map to select the new
> > > CPEI target, and it seems like we can end up in the same
> > > situation as the problem I'm trying to fix now.
> > >
> > > Paul?
> > >
> > > My patch has held up for over 24 hours of stress testing, where
> > > we put the system under a heavy load and then randomly
> > > offline/online CPUs every 2 seconds. Without this patch, the
> > > machine would crash reliably within 15 minutes.
> >
> > I don't claim much expertise on IA64 low-level architectural details,
>
> I'm starting to get a bit out of my depth here too... :-/
>
> > so am reduced to asking the usual question... Does this patch guarantee
> > that a given CPU won't be executing irq handlers while marked offline?
> > If there is no such guarantee, things can break. (See below.)
>
> My patch makes no guarantee. What it does do is prevent a NULL
> deref while we are, in fact, executing an irq handler while
> marked offline.
>
> > In any case, apologies for failing to correctly fix the original
> > problem!!!
>
> I'm curious, reading through your old change log:
>
> Make ia64 refrain from clearing a given to-be-offlined CPU's
> bit in the cpu_online_mask until it has processed pending
> irqs. This change prevents other CPUs from being blindsided
> by an apparently offline CPU nevertheless changing globally
> visible state.
>
> Was your patch fixing a theoretical problem or a real bug? What
> globally visible state were you referencing there?
>
> > > ---
> > >
> > > diff --git a/arch/ia64/kernel/smpboot.c b/arch/ia64/kernel/smpboot.c
> > > index 1146399..2a17d1c 100644
> > > --- a/arch/ia64/kernel/smpboot.c
> > > +++ b/arch/ia64/kernel/smpboot.c
> > > @@ -742,8 +742,8 @@ int __cpu_disable(void)
> > > }
> > >
> > > remove_siblinginfo(cpu);
> > > - fixup_irqs();
> > > cpu_clear(cpu, cpu_online_map);
> > > + fixup_irqs();
> >
> > So you argument is that because we are running in the context of
> > stop_machine(), even though fixup_irqs() does in fact cause irq handlers
> > to run on the current CPU which is marked offline, the fact that there
> > is no one running to notice this misbehavior makes it OK? (Which
> > perhaps it is, just asking the question.)
>
> I wouldn't say that I have a solid argument, per se, just fixing
> symptoms. ;)
>
> My reading of the cpu_down() path makes it seem like we need to
> process pending interrupts on the current CPU, and the original
> author certainly thought it was ok to call an irq handler on the
> current CPU. We don't disable local irqs until the very last step
> of fixup_irqs().
>
> So the actual design of this path assumed it was ok to call an
> irq handler on a marked-offline CPU.
>
> Can you educate me on the danger of doing such a thing? That
> might help in how I interpret the code.

Well, RCU happily ignores CPUs that don't have their bits set in
cpu_online_map, so if there are RCU read-side critical sections in the
irq handlers being run, RCU will ignore them. If the other CPUs were
running, they might sequence through the RCU state machine, which could
result in data structures being yanked out from under those irq handlers,
which in turn could result in oopses or worse.

Thanx, Paul


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