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SubjectRe: [PATCH 00/13] KVM: MMU: fast page fault
On Mon, Apr 09, 2012 at 04:12:46PM +0300, Avi Kivity wrote:
> On 03/29/2012 11:20 AM, Xiao Guangrong wrote:
> > * Idea
> > The present bit of page fault error code (EFEC.P) indicates whether the
> > page table is populated on all levels, if this bit is set, we can know
> > the page fault is caused by the page-protection bits (e.g. W/R bit) or
> > the reserved bits.
> >
> > In KVM, in most cases, all this kind of page fault (EFEC.P = 1) can be
> > simply fixed: the page fault caused by reserved bit
> > (EFFC.P = 1 && EFEC.RSV = 1) has already been filtered out in fast mmio
> > path. What we need do to fix the rest page fault (EFEC.P = 1 && RSV != 1)
> > is just increasing the corresponding access on the spte.
> >
> > This pachset introduces a fast path to fix this kind of page fault: it
> > is out of mmu-lock and need not walk host page table to get the mapping
> > from gfn to pfn.
> >
> >
>
> This patchset is really worrying to me.
>
> It introduces a lot of concurrency into data structures that were not
> designed for it. Even if it is correct, it will be very hard to
> convince ourselves that it is correct, and if it isn't, to debug those
> subtle bugs. It will also be much harder to maintain the mmu code than
> it is now.
>
> There are a lot of things to check. Just as an example, we need to be
> sure that if we use rcu_dereference() twice in the same code path, that
> any inconsistencies due to a write in between are benign. Doing that is
> a huge task.
>
> But I appreciate the performance improvement and would like to see a
> simpler version make it in. This needs to reduce the amount of data
> touched in the fast path so it is easier to validate, and perhaps reduce
> the number of cases that the fast path works on.
>
> I would like to see the fast path as simple as
>
> rcu_read_lock();
>
> (lockless shadow walk)
> spte = ACCESS_ONCE(*sptep);
>
> if (!(spte & PT_MAY_ALLOW_WRITES))
> goto slow;
>
> gfn = kvm_mmu_page_get_gfn(sp, sptep - sp->sptes)
> mark_page_dirty(kvm, gfn);
>
> new_spte = spte & ~(PT64_MAY_ALLOW_WRITES | PT_WRITABLE_MASK);
> if (cmpxchg(sptep, spte, new_spte) != spte)
> goto slow;
>
> rcu_read_unlock();
> return;
>
> slow:
> rcu_read_unlock();
> slow_path();
>
> It now becomes the responsibility of the slow path to maintain *sptep &
> PT_MAY_ALLOW_WRITES, but that path has a simpler concurrency model. It
> can be as simple as a clear_bit() before we update sp->gfns[] or if we
> add host write protection.
>
> Sorry, it's too complicated for me. Marcelo, what's your take?

The improvement is small and limited to special cases (migration should
be rare and framebuffer memory accounts for a small percentage of total
memory).

For one, how can this be safe against mmu notifier methods?

KSM |VCPU0 | VCPU1
| fault | fault
| cow-page |
| set spte RW |
| |
write protect host pte | |
grab mmu_lock | |
remove writeable bit in spte | |
increase mmu_notifier_seq | | spte = read-only spte
release mmu_lock | | cmpxchg succeeds, RO->RW!
MMU notifiers rely on the fault path sequence being

read host pte
read mmu_notifier_seq
spin_lock(mmu_lock)
if (mmu_notifier_seq changed)
goodbye, host pte value is stale
spin_unlock(mmu_lock)
By the example above, you cannot rely on the spte value alone,
mmu_notifier_seq must be taken into account.



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