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SubjectRe: [PATCH v2 7/7] n_tty: Provide an informational line on VSTATUS receipt
On Tue, Jun 25, 2019 at 07:11:53PM +0300, Arseny Maslennikov wrote:
> If the three termios local flags isig, icanon, iexten are enabled
> and the local flag nokerninfo is disabled for a tty governed
> by the n_tty line discipline, then on receiving the keyboard status
> character n_tty will generate a status message and write it out to
> the tty before sending SIGINFO to the tty's foreground process group.
>
> This kerninfo line contains information about the current system load
> as well as some properties of "the most interesting" process in the
> tty's current foreground process group, namely:
> - its PID as seen inside its deepest PID namespace;
> * the whole process group ought to be in a single PID namespace,
> so this is actually deterministic
> - its saved command name truncated to 16 bytes (task_struct::comm);
> * at the time of writing TASK_COMM_LEN == 16
> - its state and some related bits, procps-style;
> - for S and D: its symbolic wait channel, if available; or a short
> description for other process states instead;
> - its user, system and real rusage time values;
> - its resident set size (as well as the high watermark) in kilobytes.

Why is this really all needed as we have the SysRq handlers that report
all of this today?

> The "most interesting" process is chosen as follows:
> - runnables over everything
> - uninterruptibles over everything else
> - among 2 runnables pick the biggest utime + stime
> - any unresolved ties are decided in favour of greatest PID.

This does not feel like something that the tty core code should be doing
at all.

> While the kerninfo line is not very useful for debugging the kernel
> itself, since we have much more powerful debugging tools, it still gives
> the user behind the terminal some meaningful feedback to a VSTATUS that
> works even if no processes respond.

That's what SysRq is for. If there's a specific set of values that we
don't currently report in that facility, why not just add the
information there? It's much simpler and "safer" that way.

thanks,

greg k-h

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