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SubjectRe: [RFC PATCH 0/7] kvm: arm64: Support stage2 hardware DBM
On 2020-05-25 12:23, Keqian Zhu wrote:
> This patch series add support for stage2 hardware DBM, and it is only
> used for dirty log for now.
>
> It works well under some migration test cases, including VM with 4K
> pages or 2M THP. I checked the SHA256 hash digest of all memory and
> they keep same for source VM and destination VM, which means no dirty
> pages is missed under hardware DBM.
>
> However, there are some known issues not solved.
>
> 1. Some mechanisms that rely on "write permission fault" become
> invalid,
> such as kvm_set_pfn_dirty and "mmap page sharing".
>
> kvm_set_pfn_dirty is called in user_mem_abort when guest issues
> write
> fault. This guarantees physical page will not be dropped directly
> when
> host kernel recycle memory. After using hardware dirty management,
> we
> have no chance to call kvm_set_pfn_dirty.

Then you will end-up with memory corruption under memory pressure.
This also breaks things like CoW, which we depend on.

>
> For "mmap page sharing" mechanism, host kernel will allocate a new
> physical page when guest writes a page that is shared with other
> page
> table entries. After using hardware dirty management, we have no
> chance
> to do this too.
>
> I need to do some survey on how stage1 hardware DBM solve these
> problems.
> It helps if anyone can figure it out.
>
> 2. Page Table Modification Races: Though I have found and solved some
> data
> races when kernel changes page table entries, I still doubt that
> there
> are data races I am not aware of. It's great if anyone can figure
> them out.
>
> 3. Performance: Under Kunpeng 920 platform, for every 64GB memory, KVM
> consumes about 40ms to traverse all PTEs to collect dirty log. It
> will
> cause unbearable downtime for migration if memory size is too big. I
> will
> try to solve this problem in Patch v1.

This, in my opinion, is why Stage-2 DBM is fairly useless.
From a performance perspective, this is the worse possible
situation. You end up continuously scanning page tables, at
an arbitrary rate, without a way to evaluate the fault rate.

One thing S2-DBM would be useful for is SVA, where a device
write would mark the S2 PTs dirty as they are shared between
CPU and SMMU. Another thing is SPE, which is essentially a DMA
agent using the CPU's PTs.

But on its own, and just to log the dirty pages, S2-DBM is
pretty rubbish. I wish arm64 had something like Intel's PML,
which looks far more interesting for the purpose of tracking
accesses.

Thanks,

M.
--
Jazz is not dead. It just smells funny...

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