Re: [PATCH] Use of getblk differs between locations

From: Jeff Mahoney
Date: Wed Oct 12 2005 - 14:49:17 EST

Hash: SHA1

Anton Altaparmakov wrote:
> On Tue, 2005-10-11 at 00:49 +0200, Mikulas Patocka wrote:
>> On Mon, 10 Oct 2005, Anton Altaparmakov wrote:
>>> On Mon, 10 Oct 2005, Mikulas Patocka wrote:
>>>> On Mon, 10 Oct 2005, Glauber de Oliveira Costa wrote:
>>>> As comment in buffer.c says, getblk will deadlock if the machine is out of
>>>> memory. It is questionable whether to deadlock or return NULL and corrupt
>>>> filesystem in this case --- deadlock is probably better.
>>> What do you mean corrupt filesystem? If a filesystem is written so badly
>>> that it will cause corruption when a NULL is returned somewhere, I
>>> certainly don't want to have anything to do with it.
>> What should a filesystem driver do if it can't suddenly read or write any
>> blocks on media?
> Two clear choices:
> 1) Switch to read-only and use the cached data to fulfil requests and
> fail all others.
> 2) Ask the user to insert the media/plug the device back in (this is by
> far the most likely cause of all requests suddenly failing) and then
> continue where they left off.
> It is unfortunate that Linux does not allow for 2) so you need to do 1).

I recently looked into 2) a bit and the dm multipath code is almost
enough to do exactly this.

If you configure your block device as an mpath device that queues on
path failure, and change the table to the new device location on device
re-attach, the queued up i/o will be flushed out. Almost. Right now,
when you change the table and resume the dm mapping, it does a suspend
which attempts to write out the data to a device which is no longer
there, causing it to just be dropped on the floor. If this were changed
not to do that, and perhaps set a timer so that the dirty data wouldn't
be left around forever if the device wasn't reattached, 2) would
definitely be possible.

I realize that the userspace intervention required may involve a bit of
dark magic, but my point is most of the code required on the kernel side
is already implemented.

- -Jeff

- --
Jeff Mahoney
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