Re: [RFC 02/15] vfs: Change all structures to support 64 bit time

From: Dave Chinner
Date: Wed Jan 13 2016 - 16:06:41 EST

On Wed, Jan 13, 2016 at 08:33:16AM -0800, Deepa Dinamani wrote:
> On Tue, Jan 12, 2016 at 07:29:57PM +1100, Dave Chinner wrote:
> > On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 09:42:36PM -0800, Deepa Dinamani wrote:
> > > > On Jan 11, 2016, at 04:33, Dave Chinner <david@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> > > >
> > > >> On Wed, Jan 06, 2016 at 09:35:59PM -0800, Deepa Dinamani wrote:
> Summarizing, here are the open questions that need to be sorted before another
> series:
> 1. What should be part of the series?
> a. y2038 safe data types conversion.
> b. range check and clamping


> 2. How to achieve a seamless transition?
> Is inode_timespec solution agreed upon to achieve 1a?

No. Just convert direct to timespec64.

> An alternate approach is included in the cover letter.
> 3. policy for handling out of range timestamps:
> There was no conclusion on this from the previous series as noted in the
> cover letter.
> a. sysadmin through sysctl (Arnd's suggestion)
> b. have default vfs handlers with an option for individual fs to override.
> c. clamp and ignore

I think it's a mix - if the timestamps come in from userspace,
fail with ERANGE. That could be controlled by sysctl via VFS
part of the ->setattr operation, or in each of the individual FS
implementations. If they come from the kernel (e.g. atime update) then
the generic behvaiour is to warn and continue, filesystems can
otherwise select their own policy for kernel updates via

> d. disable expired fs at compile time (Arnd's suggestion)

Not really an option, because it means we can't use filesystems that
interop with other systems (e.g. cameras, etc) because they won't
support y2038k timestamps for a long time, if ever (e.g. vfat).

> > > The problem really is that
> > > there is more than one way of updating these attributes(timestamps in
> > > this particular case). The side effect of this is that we don't always
> > > call timespec_trunc() before assigning timestamps which can lead to
> > > inconsistencies between on disk and in memory inode timestamps.
> >
> > That's a problem that can be fixed independently of y2038 support.
> > Indeed, we can be quite lazy about updating timestamps - by intent
> > and design we usually have different timestamps in memory compared
> > to on disk, which is one of the reasons why there are so many
> > different ways to change and update timestamps....
> This has nothing to do with lazy updates.
> This is about writing wrong granularities and non clamped values to
> in-memory inode.

Which really shouldn't happen because we should be clamping and/or
truncating timestamps at the creation/entry point into the

e.g. current_fs_time(sb) is how filesystems grab the current kernel
time for timestamp updates. Add an equivalent current_fs_time64(sb)
to do return timespec64 and do clamping and limit warning, and now
you have a simple vehicle for converting the VFS and filesystems to
support y2038k clean date formats.

If there are places where filesystems are receiving or using
unchecked timestamps then those are bugs that need fixing. Those
need to be in separate patches to y2038k support...


Dave Chinner