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SubjectRe: [PATCH 7/7] DWARF: add the config option
On Tue, May 9, 2017 at 7:58 AM, Josh Poimboeuf <> wrote:
> On Tue, May 09, 2017 at 03:00:45AM -0700, wrote:
>> I'm, ahem, highly skeptical to creating our own unwinding data format
>> unless there is *documented, supported, and tested* way to force the
>> compiler to *automatically* fall back to frame pointers any time there
>> may be complexity involved, which at a very minimum includes any kind
>> of data-dependent manipulation of the stack pointer.
> That would be nice. But isn't falling back to a frame pointer (or
> another callee-saved reg or a stack location) already needed in such
> cases? Otherwise how could DWARF unwinding work?
>> Otherwise you will have to fail the kernel build when your static tool
>> runs into instruction sequences it can't deal with, but the compiler
>> may generate them - boom.
> Failing the build is harsh, we could just warn about it and skip the
> data for the affected function(s).
> BTW, there is another option. Instead of generating the data from
> scratch, we could just convert gcc's DWARF CFI to the format we need.
> However that wouldn't solve the problems we have with the holes and
> inaccuracies in DWARF from our hand-annotated asm, inline asm, and
> special sections (extable, alternatives, etc). We'd still have to rely
> on objtool for that, so we'd still be in the same boat of needing
> objtool to be able to follow gcc code paths.

CFI directives are documented in GNU assembler manual. They
store unwind info in .eh_frame section. They work well with assembly
codes in glibc. But I don't know how well they work with kernel unwind.

> So yes, it sucks that objtool needs to work for unwinding to work. But
> if we want decent DWARF-esque unwinding, I don't see any way around
> that due to the low-level nature of the kernel.
>> Worse, your tool will not even recognize the problem and you're in a
>> worse place than when you started.
> We could have a runtime NMI-based stack checker which ensures it can
> always unwind to the bottom of the stack. Over time this would
> hopefully provide full validation of the unwinder data and
> functionality.
> --
> Josh


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