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SubjectRe: [RFC][PATCH v3 1/3] A device for zero-copy based on KVM virtio-net.
On Wednesday 14 April 2010, Michael S. Tsirkin wrote:
> On Wed, Apr 14, 2010 at 04:55:21PM +0200, Arnd Bergmann wrote:
> > On Friday 09 April 2010, wrote:
> > > From: Xin Xiaohui <>
> > It seems that you are duplicating a lot of functionality that
> > is already in macvtap. I've asked about this before but then
> > didn't look at your newer versions. Can you explain the value
> > of introducing another interface to user land?
> Hmm, I have not noticed a lot of duplication.

The code is indeed quite distinct, but the idea of adding another
character device to pass into vhost for direct device access is.

> BTW macvtap also duplicates tun code, it might be
> a good idea for tun to export some functionality.

Yes, that's something I plan to look into.

> > I'm still planning to add zero-copy support to macvtap,
> > hopefully reusing parts of your code, but do you think there
> > is value in having both?
> If macvtap would get zero copy tx and rx, maybe not. But
> it's not immediately obvious whether zero-copy support
> for macvtap might work, though, especially for zero copy rx.
> The approach with mpassthru is much simpler in that
> it takes complete control of the device.

As far as I can tell, the most significant limitation of mpassthru
is that there can only ever be a single guest on a physical NIC.

Given that limitation, I believe we can do the same on macvtap,
and simply disable zero-copy RX when you want to use more than one
guest, or both guest and host on the same NIC.

The logical next step here would be to allow VMDq and similar
technologies to separate out the RX traffic in the hardware.
We don't have a configuration interface for that yet, but
since this is logically the same as macvlan, I think we should
use the same interfaces for both, essentially treating VMDq
as a hardware acceleration for macvlan. We can probably handle
it in similar ways to how we handle hardware support for vlan.

At that stage, macvtap would be the logical interface for
connecting a VMDq (hardware macvlan) device to a guest!

> > > +static ssize_t mp_chr_aio_write(struct kiocb *iocb, const struct iovec *iov,
> > > + unsigned long count, loff_t pos)
> > > +{
> > > + struct file *file = iocb->ki_filp;
> > > + struct mp_struct *mp = mp_get(file->private_data);
> > > + struct sock *sk = mp->;
> > > + struct sk_buff *skb;
> > > + int len, err;
> > > + ssize_t result;
> >
> > Can you explain what this function is even there for? AFAICT, vhost-net
> > doesn't call it, the interface is incompatible with the existing
> > tap interface, and you don't provide a read function.
> qemu needs the ability to inject raw packets into device
> from userspace, bypassing vhost/virtio (for live migration).

Ok, but since there is only a write callback and no read, it won't
actually be able to do this with the current code, right?

Moreover, it seems weird to have a new type of interface here that
duplicates tap/macvtap with less functionality. Coming back
to your original comment, this means that while mpassthru is currently
not duplicating the actual code from macvtap, it would need to do
exactly that to get the qemu interface right!


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