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SubjectRe: [PATCH RFC 1/2] Add polling support to pidfd
On Sat, Apr 20, 2019 at 12:35 AM Daniel Colascione <dancol@google.com> wrote:
>
> On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 2:48 PM Christian Brauner <christian@brauner.io> wrote:
> >
> > On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 11:21 PM Daniel Colascione <dancol@google.com> wrote:
> > >
> > > On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 1:57 PM Christian Brauner <christian@brauner.io> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 10:34 PM Daniel Colascione <dancol@google.com> wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > > On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 12:49 PM Joel Fernandes <joel@joelfernandes.org> wrote:
> > > > > >
> > > > > > On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 09:18:59PM +0200, Christian Brauner wrote:
> > > > > > > On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 03:02:47PM -0400, Joel Fernandes wrote:
> > > > > > > > On Thu, Apr 18, 2019 at 07:26:44PM +0200, Christian Brauner wrote:
> > > > > > > > > On April 18, 2019 7:23:38 PM GMT+02:00, Jann Horn <jannh@google.com> wrote:
> > > > > > > > > >On Wed, Apr 17, 2019 at 3:09 PM Oleg Nesterov <oleg@redhat.com> wrote:
> > > > > > > > > >> On 04/16, Joel Fernandes wrote:
> > > > > > > > > >> > On Tue, Apr 16, 2019 at 02:04:31PM +0200, Oleg Nesterov wrote:
> > > > > > > > > >> > >
> > > > > > > > > >> > > Could you explain when it should return POLLIN? When the whole
> > > > > > > > > >process exits?
> > > > > > > > > >> >
> > > > > > > > > >> > It returns POLLIN when the task is dead or doesn't exist anymore,
> > > > > > > > > >or when it
> > > > > > > > > >> > is in a zombie state and there's no other thread in the thread
> > > > > > > > > >group.
> > > > > > > > > >>
> > > > > > > > > >> IOW, when the whole thread group exits, so it can't be used to
> > > > > > > > > >monitor sub-threads.
> > > > > > > > > >>
> > > > > > > > > >> just in case... speaking of this patch it doesn't modify
> > > > > > > > > >proc_tid_base_operations,
> > > > > > > > > >> so you can't poll("/proc/sub-thread-tid") anyway, but iiuc you are
> > > > > > > > > >going to use
> > > > > > > > > >> the anonymous file returned by CLONE_PIDFD ?
> > > > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > > >I don't think procfs works that way. /proc/sub-thread-tid has
> > > > > > > > > >proc_tgid_base_operations despite not being a thread group leader.
> > > > > > > > > >(Yes, that's kinda weird.) AFAICS the WARN_ON_ONCE() in this code can
> > > > > > > > > >be hit trivially, and then the code will misbehave.
> > > > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > > >@Joel: I think you'll have to either rewrite this to explicitly bail
> > > > > > > > > >out if you're dealing with a thread group leader, or make the code
> > > > > > > > > >work for threads, too.
> > > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > > The latter case probably being preferred if this API is supposed to be
> > > > > > > > > useable for thread management in userspace.
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > At the moment, we are not planning to use this for sub-thread management. I
> > > > > > > > am reworking this patch to only work on clone(2) pidfds which makes the above
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Indeed and agreed.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > discussion about /proc a bit unnecessary I think. Per the latest CLONE_PIDFD
> > > > > > > > patches, CLONE_THREAD with pidfd is not supported.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Yes. We have no one asking for it right now and we can easily add this
> > > > > > > later.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Admittedly I haven't gotten around to reviewing the patches here yet
> > > > > > > completely. But one thing about using POLLIN. FreeBSD is using POLLHUP
> > > > > > > on process exit which I think is nice as well. How about returning
> > > > > > > POLLIN | POLLHUP on process exit?
> > > > > > > We already do things like this. For example, when you proxy between
> > > > > > > ttys. If the process that you're reading data from has exited and closed
> > > > > > > it's end you still can't usually simply exit because it might have still
> > > > > > > buffered data that you want to read. The way one can deal with this
> > > > > > > from userspace is that you can observe a (POLLHUP | POLLIN) event and
> > > > > > > you keep on reading until you only observe a POLLHUP without a POLLIN
> > > > > > > event at which point you know you have read
> > > > > > > all data.
> > > > > > > I like the semantics for pidfds as well as it would indicate:
> > > > > > > - POLLHUP -> process has exited
> > > > > > > - POLLIN -> information can be read
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Actually I think a bit different about this, in my opinion the pidfd should
> > > > > > always be readable (we would store the exit status somewhere in the future
> > > > > > which would be readable, even after task_struct is dead). So I was thinking
> > > > > > we always return EPOLLIN. If process has not exited, then it blocks.
> > > > >
> > > > > ITYM that a pidfd polls as readable *once a task exits* and stays
> > > > > readable forever. Before a task exit, a poll on a pidfd should *not*
> > > > > yield POLLIN and reading that pidfd should *not* complete immediately.
> > > > > There's no way that, having observed POLLIN on a pidfd, you should
> > > > > ever then *not* see POLLIN on that pidfd in the future --- it's a
> > > > > one-way transition from not-ready-to-get-exit-status to
> > > > > ready-to-get-exit-status.
> > > >
> > > > What do you consider interesting state transitions? A listener on a pidfd
> > > > in epoll_wait() might be interested if the process execs for example.
> > > > That's a very valid use-case for e.g. systemd.
> > >
> > > Sure, but systemd is specialized.
> >
> > So is Android and we're not designing an interface for Android but for
> > all of userspace.
>
> Nothing in my post is Android-specific. Waiting for non-child
> processes is something that lots of people want to do, which is why
> patches to enable it have been getting posted every few years for many
> years (e.g., Andy's from 2011). I, too, want to make an API for all
> over userspace. Don't attribute to me arguments that I'm not actually
> making.
>
> > I hope this is clear. Service managers are quite important and systemd
> > is the largest one
> > and they can make good use of this feature.
>
> Service managers already have the tools they need to do their job. The

No they don't. Even if they quite often have kludges and run into a lot
of problems. That's why there's interest in these features as well.

> kind of monitoring you're talking about is a niche case and an
> improved API for this niche --- which amounts to a rethought ptrace
> --- can wait for a future date, when it can be done right. Nothing in
> the model I'm advocating precludes adding an event stream API in the
> future. I don't think we should gate the ability to wait for process
> exit via pidfd on pidfds providing an entire ptrace replacement
> facility.
>
> > > There are two broad classes of programs that care about process exit
> > > status: 1) those that just want to do something and wait for it to
> > > complete, and 2) programs that want to perform detailed monitoring of
> > > processes and intervention in their state. #1 is overwhelmingly more
> > > common. The basic pidfd feature should take care of case #1 only, as
> > > wait*() in file descriptor form. I definitely don't think we should be
> > > complicating the interface and making it more error-prone (see below)
> > > for the sake of that rare program that cares about non-exit
> > > notification conditions. You're proposing a complicated combination of
> > > poll bit flags that most users (the ones who just wait to wait for
> > > processes) don't care about and that risk making the facility hard to
> > > use with existing event loops, which generally recognize readability
> > > and writability as the only properties that are worth monitoring.
> >
> > That whole pargraph is about dismissing a range of valid use-cases based on
> > assumptions such as "way more common" and
>
> It really ought not to be controversial to say that process managers
> make up a small fraction of the programs that wait for child
> processes.

Well, daemons tend to do those things do. System managers and container
managers are just an example of a whole class. Even if you just consider system
managers like openrc, systemd you have gotten yourself quite a large userbase.

>
> > even argues that service managers are special cases and therefore not
> > really worth considering. I would like to be more open to other use cases.
>
> It's not my position that service managers are "not worth considering"
> and you know that, so I'd appreciate your not attributing to me views
> hat I don't hold. I *am* saying that an event-based process-monitoring

It very much sounded like it. Calling them a "niche" case didn't help
given that they run quite a lot of workloads everywhere.

> API is out of scope and that it should be separate work: the
> overwhelmingly majority of process manipulation (say, in libraries
> wanting private helper processes, which is something I thought we all
> agreed would be beneficial to support) is waiting for exit.
>
> > > > We can't use EPOLLIN for that too otherwise you'd need to to waitid(_WNOHANG)
> > > > to check whether an exit status can be read which is not nice and then you
> > > > multiplex different meanings on the same bit.
> > > > I would prefer if the exit status can only be read from the parent which is
> > > > clean and the least complicated semantics, i.e. Linus waitid() idea.
> > >
> > > Exit status information should be *at least* as broadly available
> > > through pidfds as it is through the last field of /proc/pid/stat
> > > today, and probably more broadly. I've been saying for six months now
> > > that we need to talk about *who* should have access to exit status
> > > information. We haven't had that conversation yet. My preference is to
> >
> > > just make exit status information globally available, as FreeBSD seems
> > > to do. I think it would be broadly useful for something like pkill to
> >
> > From the pdfork() FreeBSD manpage:
> > "poll(2) and select(2) allow waiting for process state transitions;
> > currently only POLLHUP is defined, and will be raised when the process dies.
> > Process state transitions can also be monitored using kqueue(2) filter
> > EVFILT_PROCDESC; currently only NOTE_EXIT is implemented."
>
> I don't understand what you're trying to demonstrate by quoting that passage.

FreeBSD obviously has thought about being able to observe
more than just NOTE_EXIT in the future.

>
> > > wait for processes to exit and to retrieve their exit information.
> > >
> > > Speaking of pkill: AIUI, in your current patch set, one can get a
> > > pidfd *only* via clone. Joel indicated that he believes poll(2)
> > > shouldn't be supported on procfs pidfds. Is that your thinking as
> > > well? If that's the case, then we're in a state where non-parents
> >
> > Yes, it is.
>
> If reading process status information from a pidfd is destructive,
> it's dangerous to share pidfds between processes. If reading
> information *isn't* destructive, how are you supposed to use poll(2)
> to wait for the next transition? Is poll destructive? If you can only
> make a new pidfd via clone, you can't get two separate event streams
> for two different users. Sharing a single pidfd via dup or SCM_RIGHTS
> becomes dangerous, because if reading status is destructive, only one
> reader can observe each event. Your proposed edge-triggered design
> makes pidfds significantly less useful, because in your design, it's
> unsafe to share a single pidfd open file description *and* there's no
> way to create a new pidfd open file description for an existing
> process.
>
> I think we should make an API for all of userspace and not just for
> container managers and systemd.

I mean, you can go and try making arguments based on syntactical
rearrangements of things I said but I'm going to pass.

My point simply was: There are more users that would be interested
in observing more state transitions in the future.
Your argument made it sound like they are not worth considering.
I disagree.

>
> > > can't wait for process exit, and providing this facility is an
> > > important goal of the whole project.
> >
> > That's your goal.
>
> I thought we all agreed on that months ago that it's reasonable to
> allow processes to wait for non-child processes to exit. Now, out of

Uhm, I can't remember being privy to that agreement but the threads get
so long that maybe I forgot what I wrote?

> the blue, you're saying that 1) actually, we want a rich API for all
> kinds of things that aren't process exit, because systemd, and 2)

- I'm not saying we have to. It just makes it more flexible and is something
we can at least consider.
- systemd is an example of another *huge* user of this api. That neither implies
this api is "because systemd" it simply makes it worth that we
consider this use-case.

> actually, non-parents shouldn't be able to wait for process death. I

I'm sorry, who has agreed that a non-parent should be able to wait for
process death?
I know you proposed that but has anyone ever substantially supported this?
I'm happy if you can gather the necessary support for this but I just
haven't seen that yet.

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