Re: [PATCH 00/14] introduce the BFQ-v0 I/O scheduler as an extra scheduler

From: Jens Axboe
Date: Sat Oct 29 2016 - 10:13:21 EST

On 10/28/2016 11:38 PM, Paolo Valente wrote:

Il giorno 26 ott 2016, alle ore 18:12, Jens Axboe <axboe@xxxxxxxxx> ha scritto:

On 10/26/2016 10:04 AM, Paolo Valente wrote:

Il giorno 26 ott 2016, alle ore 17:32, Jens Axboe <axboe@xxxxxxxxx> ha scritto:

On 10/26/2016 09:29 AM, Christoph Hellwig wrote:
On Wed, Oct 26, 2016 at 05:13:07PM +0200, Arnd Bergmann wrote:
The question to ask first is whether to actually have pluggable
schedulers on blk-mq at all, or just have one that is meant to
do the right thing in every case (and possibly can be bypassed

That would be my preference. Have a BFQ-variant for blk-mq as an
option (default to off unless opted in by the driver or user), and
not other scheduler for blk-mq. Don't bother with bfq for non
blk-mq. It's not like there is any advantage in the legacy-request
device even for slow devices, except for the option of having I/O

It's the only right way forward. blk-mq might not offer any substantial
advantages to rotating storage, but with scheduling, it won't offer a
downside either. And it'll take us towards the real goal, which is to
have just one IO path.


Adding a new scheduler for the legacy IO path
makes no sense.

I would fully agree if effective and stable I/O scheduling would be
available in blk-mq in one or two months. But I guess that it will
take at least one year optimistically, given the current status of the
needed infrastructure, and given the great difficulties of doing
effective scheduling at the high parallelism and extreme target speeds
of blk-mq. Of course, this holds true unless little clever scheduling
is performed.

So, what's the point in forcing a lot of users wait another year or
more, for a solution that has yet to be even defined, while they could
enjoy a much better system, and then switch an even better system when
scheduling is ready in blk-mq too?

That same argument could have been made 2 years ago. Saying no to a new
scheduler for the legacy framework goes back roughly that long. We could
have had BFQ for mq NOW, if we didn't keep coming back to this very

I'm hesistant to add a new scheduler because it's very easy to add, very
difficult to get rid of. If we do add BFQ as a legacy scheduler now,
it'll take us years and years to get rid of it again. We should be
moving towards LESS moving parts in the legacy path, not more.

We can keep having this discussion every few years, but I think we'd
both prefer to make some actual progress here.

ok Jens, I give up

It's perfectly fine to
add an interface for a single queue interface for an IO scheduler for
blk-mq, since we don't care too much about scalability there. And that
won't take years, that should be a few weeks. Retrofitting BFQ on top of
that should not be hard either. That can co-exist with a real multiqueue
scheduler as well, something that's geared towards some fairness for
faster devices.

AFAICT this solution is good, for many practical reasons. I don't
have the expertise to make such an infrastructure well on my own. At
least not in an acceptable amount of time, because working on this
nice stuff is unfortunately not my job (although Linaro is now
supporting me for BFQ).

Then, assuming that this solution may be of general interest, and that
BFQ benefits convinced you a little bit too, may I get significant
collaboration/help on implementing this infrastructure?

Of course, I already offered to help with this.

If so, Jens
and all possibly interested parties, could we have a sort of short
kick-off technical meeting during KS/LPC?

I'm not a huge fan of setting up a BoF to discuss something technical,
when there's no code to discuss yet. We need some actual meat on the
bone in the shape of code, and that's much better dealt with in email.
Timing is pretty advanced at this point, otherwise I'd offer to cook
something up that we COULD discuss, but I will not have time to do that
for KS.

If you are at LPC, why don't the two of us sit down and talk about it
Wednesday or Thursday? I'd like to try and understand what parts of
blk-mq you aren't up to speed on, and how we can best get a simple
framework going that will allow us to entertain single queue scheduling
within blk-mq.

Jens Axboe