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SubjectRe: [PATCH] mm: fix a data race in put_page()
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On 2/8/20 7:10 PM, Qian Cai wrote:
>
>
>> On Feb 8, 2020, at 8:44 PM, John Hubbard <jhubbard@nvidia.com> wrote:
>>
>> So it looks like we're probably stuck with having to annotate the code. Given
>> that, there is a balance between how many macros, and how much commenting. For
>> example, if there is a single macro (data_race, for example), then we'll need to
>> add comments for the various cases, explaining which data_race situation is
>> happening.
>
> On the other hand, it is perfect fine of not commenting on each data_race() that most of times, people could run git blame to learn more details. Actually, no maintainers from various of subsystems asked for commenting so far.
>

Well, maybe I'm looking at this wrong. I was thinking that one should attempt to
understand the code on the screen, and that's generally best--but here, maybe
"data_race" is just something that means "tool cruft", really. So mentally we
would move toward visually filtering out the data_race "key word".

I really don't like it but at least there is a significant benefit from the tool
that probably makes it worth the visual noise.

Blue sky thoughts for The Far Future: It would be nice if the tools got a lot
better--maybe in the direction of C language extensions, even if only used in
this project at first.

thanks,
--
John Hubbard
NVIDIA

>>
>> That's still true, but to a lesser extent if more macros are added. In this case,
>> I suspect that READ_BITS() makes the commenting easier and shorter. So I'd tentatively
>> lead towards adding it, but what do others on the list think?
>
> Even read bits could be dangerous from data races and confusing at best, so I am not really sure what the value of introducing this new macro. People who like to understand it correctly still need to read the commit logs.
>
> This flags->zonenum is such a special case that I don’t really see it regularly for the last few weeks digging KCSAN reports, so even if it is worth adding READ_BITS(), there are more equally important macros need to be added together to be useful initially. For example, HARMLESS_COUNTERS(), READ_SINGLE_BIT(), READ_IMMUTATABLE_BITS() etc which Linus said exactly wanted to avoid.
>

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