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SubjectRe: Another proposal for DAX fault locking
On 9 February 2016 at 18:24, Jan Kara <> wrote:
> Hello,
> I was thinking about current issues with DAX fault locking [1] (data
> corruption due to racing faults allocating blocks) and also races which
> currently don't allow us to clear dirty tags in the radix tree due to races
> between faults and cache flushing [2]. Both of these exist because we don't
> have an equivalent of page lock available for DAX. While we have a
> reasonable solution available for problem [1], so far I'm not aware of a
> decent solution for [2]. After briefly discussing the issue with Mel he had
> a bright idea that we could used hashed locks to deal with [2] (and I think
> we can solve [1] with them as well). So my proposal looks as follows:
> DAX will have an array of mutexes

One folly here: Arrays of mutexes NEVER work unless you manage to
align them to occupy one complete L2/L3 cache line each. Otherwise the
CPUS will fight over cache lines each time they touch (read or write)
a mutex, and it then becomes a O^n-like scalability problem if
multiple mutexes occupy one cache line. It becomes WORSE as more
mutexes fit into a single cache line and even more worse with the
number of CPUS accessing such contested lines.

Cedric Blancher <>
Institute Pasteur

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