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SubjectRe: [PATCH v1 0/6] seccomp: Implement constant action bitmaps
On Fri, Sep 25, 2020 at 2:07 AM YiFei Zhu <> wrote:
> I'll try to profile the latter later on my qemu-kvm, with a recent
> libsecomp with binary tree and docker's profile, probably both direct
> filter attaches and filter attaches with fork(). I'm guessing if I
> have fork() the cost of fork() will overshadow seccomp() though.

I'm surprised. That is not the case as far as I can tell.

I wrote a benchmark [1] that would fork() and in the child attach a
seccomp filter, look at the CLOCK_MONOTONIC difference, then add it to
a struct timespec shared with the parent. It checks the difference
with the timespec before prctl and before fork. CLOCK_MONOTONIC
instead of CLOCK_PROCESS_CPUTIME_ID because of fork.

I ran `./seccomp_emu_bench 100000` in my qemu-kvm and here are the results:
without emulator:
Benchmarking 100000 syscalls...
19799663603 (19.8s)
seecomp attach without fork: 197996 ns
33911173847 (33.9s)
seecomp attach with fork: 339111 ns

with emulator:
Benchmarking 100000 syscalls...
54428289147 (54.4s)
seecomp attach without fork: 544282 ns
69494235408 (69.5s)
seecomp attach with fork: 694942 ns

fork seems to take around 150us, seccomp attach takes around 200us,
and the filter emulation overhead is around 350us. I had no idea that
fork was this fast. If I wrote my benchmark badly please criticise.

Given that we are doubling the time to fork() + seccomp attach filter,
I think yeah running the emulator on the first instance of a syscall,
holding a lock, is a much better idea. If I naively divide 350us by
the number of syscall + arch pairs emulated the overhead is less than
1 us and that should be okay since it only happens for the first
invocation of the particular syscall.


YiFei Zhu

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