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SubjectRe: [PATCH 7/7] DWARF: add the config option
On Wed, May 10, 2017 at 10:32:06AM +0200, Jiri Slaby wrote:
> On 05/09/2017, 09:22 PM, Josh Poimboeuf wrote:
> > On Tue, May 09, 2017 at 08:47:50PM +0200, Jiri Kosina wrote:
> >> On Sun, 7 May 2017, Josh Poimboeuf wrote:
> >>
> >>> DWARF is great for debuggers. It helps you find all the registers on
> >>> the stack, so you can see function arguments and local variables. All
> >>> expressed in a nice compact format.
> >>>
> >>> But that's overkill for unwinders. We don't need all those registers,
> >>> and the state machine is too complicated.
> >>
> >> OTOH if we make the failures in processing of those "auxiliary"
> >> information non-fatal (in a sense that it neither causes kernel bug nor
> >> does it actually corrupt the unwinding process, but the only effect is
> >> losing "optional" information), having this data available doesn't hurt.
> >
> > But it does hurt, in the sense that the complicated format of DWARF CFI
> > means the unwinder has to jump through a lot more hoops to read it.
> Why that matters, actually? Unwinder is nothing to be performance
> oriented. And if somebody is doing a lot of unwinding during runtime,
> they can switch to in-this-case-faster FP unwinder.

More complexity == more bugs.

> > And anyway, fixing the correctness of the DWARF data is only half the
> > problem IMO. The other half of the problem is unwinder complexity.
> Complex, but generic and working. IMO, it would be rather though to come
> up with some tool working on different compilers or even different
> versions of gcc. I mean some tool to convert the DWARF data to something
> proprietary. The conversion would be as complex as is the unwinder plus
> conversion to the proprietary format and its dump into ELF. We would
> still rely on a (now out-of-kernel-runtime-code) complex monolith to do
> it right.

Complexity outside of the kernel is infinitely better than complexity in
mission critical oops code.


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