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SubjectRe: [PATCH -v6 2/3] lib, Make gen_pool memory allocator lockless
Hi, Peter,

On Mon, 2010-11-29 at 20:11 +0800, Peter Zijlstra wrote:
> On Mon, 2010-11-29 at 15:03 +0800, Huang Ying wrote:
> > This version of the gen_pool memory allocator supports lockless
> > operation.
> >
> > This makes it safe to use in NMI handlers and other special
> > unblockable contexts that could otherwise deadlock on locks. This is
> > implemented by using atomic operations and retries on any conflicts.
> > The disadvantage is that there may be livelocks in extreme cases. For
> > better scalability, one gen_pool allocator can be used for each CPU.
> >
> > The lockless operation only works if there is enough memory available.
> > If new memory is added to the pool a lock has to be still taken. So
> > any user relying on locklessness has to ensure that sufficient memory
> > is preallocated.
> >
> > The basic atomic operation of this allocator is cmpxchg on long. On
> > architectures that don't have NMI-safe cmpxchg implementation, a
> > spin_trylock_irqsave based fallback is used for gen_pool_alloc, so it
> > can be used in NMI handler safely. But gen_pool_free can not be used
> > in NMI handler in these architectures, because memory free can not
> > fail.
> I still don't see a reason to merge this.
> It makes the genalloc thing slower for every other user (more LOCK'ed
> ops) and there is no new user presented in this series.

As far as I know, all genalloc users are not performance sensitive.
After all, it is mainly used to manage some device memory before. As for
users, I think this is a "chicken and egg" problem. And I have plan to
use it in APEI code.

Best Regards,
Huang Ying

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