Re: [RFC PATCH 00/14] nfsd/sunrpc: add support for a workqueue-based nfsd

From: Chuck Lever
Date: Wed Dec 03 2014 - 11:50:51 EST

On Dec 3, 2014, at 10:56 AM, Tejun Heo <tj@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Hello, Neil, Jeff.
> On Tue, Dec 02, 2014 at 08:29:46PM -0500, Jeff Layton wrote:
>> That's a good point. I had originally thought that max_active on an
>> unbound workqueue would be the number of concurrent jobs that could run
>> across all the CPUs, but now that I look I'm not sure that's really
>> the case.
> @max_active is a per-pool number. By default, unbound wqs use
> per-node pools, so @max_active would be per-node. Currently,
> @max_active is mostly meant as a protection against run-away
> workqueues creating crazy number of workers, which has been enough for
> the existing wq users. *Maybe* it makes sense to make it actually
> mean maximum concurrency which would prolly involve aggregated per-cpu
> distribution mechanism so that we don't end up inc'ing and dec'ing the
> same counter from all CPUs on each work item execution.
> However, I do agree with Neil that making it user configurable is
> almost always painful. It's usually a question without a good answer
> and the same value may behave differently depending on a lot of
> implementation details and a better approach, probably, is to use
> @max_active as the last resort protection mechanism while providing
> automatic throttling of in-flight work items which is meaningful for
> the specific use cases.
>> I've heard random grumblings from various people in the past that
>> workqueues have significant latency, but this is the first time I've
>> really hit it in practice. If we can get this fixed, then that may be a
>> significant perf win for all workqueue users. For instance, rpciod in
>> the NFS client is all workqueue-based. Getting that latency down could
>> really help things.
>> I'm currently trying to roll up a kernel module for benchmarking the
>> workqueue dispatching code in the hopes that we can use that to help
>> nail it down.
> Definitely, there were some reportings but nothing really got tracked
> down properly. It'd be awesome to actually find out where the latency
> is coming from.

I’ve measured some long (>10usec) latencies for queue_workqueue()
and wake_up_bit() calls with CPU-intensive workloads.

Often these APIs are invoked while one or more spinlocks are
held. That makes it easy to back up a lot of work if one of
these calls is slow for any reason.

For wake_up_bit(), this doesn’t include how long it takes before
the awoken process is run. With CPU-intensive workloads, it’s
often the case that hundreds of usecs elapse, and the awoken
process is migrated to another CPU (observed via ftrace).

Chuck Lever

To unsubscribe from this list: send the line "unsubscribe linux-kernel" in
the body of a message to majordomo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
More majordomo info at
Please read the FAQ at