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SubjectRe: [PATCH manpages 2/2] arch_prctl.2, set_thread_area.2, get_thread_area.2: Improve TLS documentation
On Jan 30, 2015 8:59 AM, "Michael Kerrisk (man-pages)"
<mtk.manpages@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Hi Andy,
>
> Thanks for this!
>
> I've merged this into a branch and done some light editing.
> A few questions below.
>
> On 01/29/2015 10:47 PM, Andy Lutomirski wrote:
> > The documentation for set_thread_area was very vague. This improves
> > it, accounts for recent kernel changes, and merges it with
> > get_thread_area.2.
>
> (Yep, merging seems a good idea.)
> >
> > While I'm at it, clarify the related arch_prctl.2 man page.
> >
> > Signed-off-by: Andy Lutomirski <luto@amacapital.net>
> > ---
> > man2/arch_prctl.2 | 22 +++++++-----
> > man2/get_thread_area.2 | 58 +------------------------------
> > man2/set_thread_area.2 | 93 ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++----
> > 3 files changed, 102 insertions(+), 71 deletions(-)
> >
> > diff --git a/man2/arch_prctl.2 b/man2/arch_prctl.2
> > index a3ab2b566915..c89fa3c7b744 100644
> > --- a/man2/arch_prctl.2
> > +++ b/man2/arch_prctl.2
> > @@ -114,27 +114,33 @@ The 64-bit base changes when a new 32-bit segment selector is loaded.
> > is disabled in some kernels.
> >
> > Context switches for 64-bit segment bases are rather expensive.
> > -It may be a faster alternative to set a 32-bit base using a
> > -segment selector by setting up an LDT with
> > -.BR modify_ldt (2)
> > -or using the
> > +As an optimization, if a 32-bit TLS base address is used,
> > +.BR arch_prctl (2)
> > +may use a real TLS entry as if
> > .BR set_thread_area (2)
> > -system call in kernel 2.5 or later.
> > -.BR arch_prctl ()
> > -is needed only when you want to set bases that are larger than 4GB.
> > +had been called instead of manipulating the segment base register directly.
> > Memory in the first 2GB of address space can be allocated by using
> > .BR mmap (2)
> > with the
> > .B MAP_32BIT
> > flag.
> >
> > +As a result, using
>
> Something doesn't quite flow here. "As a result" *of what*? Should this rather
> be something like:
>
> Because of the aforementioned optimization, using

Sure.

>
> > +.BR arch_prctl (2)
> > +and
> > +.BR set_thread_area (2)
> > +in the same thread is dangerous, as they may overwrite each other's
> > +TLS entries.
> > +
> > As of version 2.7, glibc provides no prototype for
> > .BR arch_prctl ().
> > You have to declare it yourself for now.
> > This may be fixed in future glibc versions.
> >
> > .I FS
> > -may be already used by the threading library.
> > +may be already used by the threading library. Glibc programs that use
>
> What is a "Glibc program"?

A program that links against glibc. Maybe that should just say "Programs".

The idea I'm trying to get across is that using ARCH_SET_FS for
private purposes is a bad idea, since your threading library
(glibc/libpthread) is very likely to use ARCH_SET_FS for its own
purposes. ARCH_SET_GS, on the other hand, is more likely to be
available for private use.

This is most relevant for programs written for the purpose of testing
arch_prctl -- using ARCH_SET_FS following by calling any glibc
function is very likely to segfault.

>
> > +.I ARCH_SET_FS
> > +directly are very likely to crash.
> > .SH SEE ALSO
> > .BR mmap (2),
> > .BR modify_ldt (2),
> > diff --git a/man2/get_thread_area.2 b/man2/get_thread_area.2
> > index 08589e413cc4..a03fe54fb08e 100644
> > --- a/man2/get_thread_area.2
> > +++ b/man2/get_thread_area.2
> > @@ -1,57 +1 @@
> > -.\" Copyright (C) 2003 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
> > -.\" Written by Kent Yoder.
> > -.\"
> > -.\" %%%LICENSE_START(GPL_NOVERSION_ONELINE)
> > -.\" This file is distributed according to the GNU General Public License.
> > -.\" %%%LICENSE_END
> > -.\"
> > -.TH GET_THREAD_AREA 2 2012-07-13 "Linux" "Linux Programmer's Manual"
> > -.SH NAME
> > -get_thread_area \- get a thread-local storage (TLS) area
> > -.SH SYNOPSIS
> > -.B #include <linux/unistd.h>
> > -.br
> > -.B #include <asm/ldt.h>
> > -.sp
> > -.BI "int get_thread_area(struct user_desc *" u_info );
> > -
> > -.IR Note :
> > -There is no glibc wrapper for this system call; see NOTES.
> > -.SH DESCRIPTION
> > -.BR get_thread_area ()
> > -returns an entry in the current thread's thread-local storage (TLS) array.
> > -The index of the entry corresponds to the value
> > -of \fIu_info\->entry_number\fP, passed in by the user.
> > -If the value is in bounds,
> > -.BR get_thread_area ()
> > -copies the corresponding
> > -TLS entry into the area pointed to by \fIu_info\fP.
> > -.SH RETURN VALUE
> > -.BR get_thread_area ()
> > -returns 0 on success.
> > -Otherwise, it returns \-1 and sets
> > -.I errno
> > -appropriately.
> > -.SH ERRORS
> > -.TP
> > -.B EFAULT
> > -\fIu_info\fP is an invalid pointer.
> > -.TP
> > -.B EINVAL
> > -\fIu_info\->entry_number\fP is out of bounds.
> > -.SH VERSIONS
> > -A version of
> > -.BR get_thread_area ()
> > -first appeared in Linux 2.5.32.
> > -.SH CONFORMING TO
> > -.BR get_thread_area ()
> > -is Linux-specific and should not be used in programs
> > -that are intended to be portable.
> > -.SH NOTES
> > -Glibc does not provide a wrapper for this system call,
> > -since it is generally intended for use only by threading libraries.
> > -In the unlikely event that you want to call it directly, use
> > -.BR syscall (2).
> > -.SH SEE ALSO
> > -.BR modify_ldt (2),
> > -.BR set_thread_area (2)
> > +.so man2/set_thread_area.2
> > diff --git a/man2/set_thread_area.2 b/man2/set_thread_area.2
> > index 321beb396312..6acc5f79d1ad 100644
> > --- a/man2/set_thread_area.2
> > +++ b/man2/set_thread_area.2
> > @@ -1,25 +1,54 @@
> > .\" Copyright (C) 2003 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
> > +.\" Copyright (C) 2015 Andrew Lutomirski
> > .\" Author: Kent Yoder
> > .\"
> > .\" %%%LICENSE_START(GPL_NOVERSION_ONELINE)
> > .\" This file is distributed according to the GNU General Public License.
> > .\" %%%LICENSE_END
> > .\"
> > -.TH SET_THREAD_AREA 2 2012-07-13 "Linux" "Linux Programmer's Manual"
> > +.TH SET_THREAD_AREA 2 2015-01-29 "Linux" "Linux Programmer's Manual"
> > .SH NAME
> > -set_thread_area \- set a thread local storage (TLS) area
> > +set_thread_area \- set a GDT entry for thread-local storage
> > .SH SYNOPSIS
> > .B #include <linux/unistd.h>
> > .br
> > .B #include <asm/ldt.h>
> > .sp
> > +.BI "int get_thread_area(struct user_desc *" u_info );
> > .BI "int set_thread_area(struct user_desc *" u_info );
> > +.in +4n
> > +.nf
> > +
> > +struct user_desc {
> > + unsigned int entry_number;
> > + unsigned long base_addr;
> > + unsigned int limit;
> > + unsigned int seg_32bit:1;
> > + unsigned int contents:2;
> > + unsigned int read_exec_only:1;
> > + unsigned int limit_in_pages:1;
> > + unsigned int seg_not_present:1;
> > + unsigned int useable:1;
> > +};
> > +.fi
> > +.in
> >
> > .IR Note :
> > There is no glibc wrapper for this system call; see NOTES.
> > .SH DESCRIPTION
> > +Linux dedicates three global descriptor table (GDT) entries for
> > +thread-local storage. For more information about the LDT, see the
>
> s/LDT/GDT? in the previous line, right?

Yes.

--Andy

>
> > +Intel Software Developer's Manual or the AMD Architecture Programming Manual.
> > +
> > +.BR get_thread_area ()
> > +reads the GDT entry indicated by
> > +.I u_info\->entry_number
> > +and fills in the rest of the fields in
> > +.I u_info.
> > +
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > -sets an entry in the current thread's thread-local storage (TLS) array.
> > +sets a TLS entry in the GDT.
> > +.PP
> > The TLS array entry set by
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > corresponds to the value of
> > @@ -27,7 +56,7 @@ corresponds to the value of
> > passed in by the user.
> > If this value is in bounds,
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > -copies the TLS descriptor pointed to by
> > +writes the TLS descriptor pointed to by
> > .I u_info
> > into the thread's TLS array.
> > .PP
> > @@ -35,12 +64,29 @@ When
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > is passed an
> > .I entry_number
> > -of \-1, it uses a free TLS entry.
> > +of \-1, it finds a free TLS entry.
>
> s/finds/searched for/ ?

How about "searches for"?

>
> > If
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > finds a free TLS entry, the value of
> > .I u_info\->entry_number
> > is set upon return to show which entry was changed.
> > +.PP
> > +A
> > +.I user_desc
> > +is considered "empty" if
> > +.I read_exec_only
> > +and
> > +.I seg_not_present
> > +are set to 1 and all of the other fields are 0. If an "empty" descriptor
> > +is passed to
> > +.BR set_thread_area,
> > +the corresponding TLS entry will be cleared. See BUGS for additional
> > +details.
> > +.PP
> > +On Linux 3.19 and newer,
> > +.BR set_thread_area ()
> > +cannot be used to write non-present segments, 16-bit segments, or code
> > +segments, although clearing a segment is still acceptable.
> > .SH RETURN VALUE
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > returns 0 on success, and \-1 on failure, with
> > @@ -56,6 +102,11 @@ set appropriately.
> > .TP
> > .B ESRCH
> > A free TLS entry could not be located.
> > +.B ENOSYS
> > +.BR get_thread_area (2)
> > +or
> > +.BR set_thread_area (2)
> > +was invoked as a 64-bit syscall.
> > .SH VERSIONS
> > A version of
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > @@ -64,10 +115,40 @@ first appeared in Linux 2.5.29.
> > .BR set_thread_area ()
> > is Linux-specific and should not be used in programs that are intended
> > to be portable.
> > +.SH BUGS
> > +On 64-bit kernels before Linux 3.19, one of the padding bits in
>
> Was that commit e30ab185c490e9a9381385529e0fd32f0a399495 ?

Yes.

>
> > +.I user_desc,
> > +if set, would prevent the descriptor from being considered empty.
> > +As a result, the only reliable way to clear a TLS entry is to use
> > +memset to zero the entire
> > +.I user_desc
> > +structure, including padding bits, and then to set the
> > +.I read_exec_only
> > +and
> > +.I seg_not_present
> > +bits. On Linux 3.19, a
> > +.I user_desc
> > +consisting entirely of zeros except for
> > +.I entry_number
> > +will also be interpreted as a request to clear a TLS entry, but this
> > +behaved differently on older kernels.
> > +.PP
> > +Prior to Linux 3.19, the DS and ES segment registers must not reference
> > +TLS entries.
> > .SH NOTES
> > Glibc does not provide a wrapper for this system call,
> > since it is generally intended only for use by threading libraries.
> > In the unlikely event that you want to call it directly, use
> > .BR syscall (2).
> > +.PP
> > +.BR arch_prctl (2)
> > +can interfere with
> > +.BR set_thread_area (2).
> > +See
> > +.BR arch_prctl (2)
> > +for more details. This is not normally a problem, as
> > +.BR arch_prctl (2)
> > +is normally only used by 64-bit programs.
> > .SH SEE ALSO
> > -.BR get_thread_area (2)
> > +.BR arch_prctl (2),
> > +.BR modify_ldt (2)
>
> Thanks,
>
> Michael
>
>
>
> --
> Michael Kerrisk
> Linux man-pages maintainer; http://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/
> Linux/UNIX System Programming Training: http://man7.org/training/


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