Re: [PATCH v9 0/8] stg mail -e --version=v9 \

From: Nitesh Narayan Lal
Date: Wed Sep 11 2019 - 09:20:45 EST

On 9/11/19 8:54 AM, Michal Hocko wrote:
> On Wed 11-09-19 14:42:41, David Hildenbrand wrote:
>> On 11.09.19 14:25, Michal Hocko wrote:
>>> On Wed 11-09-19 14:19:41, Michal Hocko wrote:
>>>> On Wed 11-09-19 08:08:38, Michael S. Tsirkin wrote:
>>>>> On Wed, Sep 11, 2019 at 01:36:19PM +0200, Michal Hocko wrote:
>>>>>> On Tue 10-09-19 14:23:40, Alexander Duyck wrote:
>>>>>> [...]
>>>>>>> We don't put any limitations on the allocator other then that it needs to
>>>>>>> clean up the metadata on allocation, and that it cannot allocate a page
>>>>>>> that is in the process of being reported since we pulled it from the
>>>>>>> free_list. If the page is a "Reported" page then it decrements the
>>>>>>> reported_pages count for the free_area and makes sure the page doesn't
>>>>>>> exist in the "Boundary" array pointer value, if it does it moves the
>>>>>>> "Boundary" since it is pulling the page.
>>>>>> This is still a non-trivial limitation on the page allocation from an
>>>>>> external code IMHO. I cannot give any explicit reason why an ordering on
>>>>>> the free list might matter (well except for page shuffling which uses it
>>>>>> to make physical memory pattern allocation more random) but the
>>>>>> architecture seems hacky and dubious to be honest. It shoulds like the
>>>>>> whole interface has been developed around a very particular and single
>>>>>> purpose optimization.
>>>>>> I remember that there was an attempt to report free memory that provided
>>>>>> a callback mechanism [1], which was much less intrusive to the internals
>>>>>> of the allocator yet it should provide a similar functionality. Did you
>>>>>> see that approach? How does this compares to it? Or am I completely off
>>>>>> when comparing them?
>>>>>> [1] mostly likely not the latest version of the patchset
>>>>> Linus nacked that one. He thinks invoking callbacks with lots of
>>>>> internal mm locks is too fragile.
>>>> I would be really curious how much he would be happy about injecting
>>>> other restrictions on the allocator like this patch proposes. This is
>>>> more intrusive as it has a higher maintenance cost longterm IMHO.
>>> Btw. I do agree that callbacks with internal mm locks are not great
>>> either. We do have a model for that in mmu_notifiers and it is something
>>> I do consider PITA, on the other hand it is mostly sleepable part of the
>>> interface which makes it the real pain. The above callback mechanism was
>>> explicitly documented with restrictions and that the context is
>>> essentially atomic with no access to particular struct pages and no
>>> expensive operations possible. So in the end I've considered it
>>> acceptably painful. Not that I want to override Linus' nack but if
>>> virtualization usecases really require some form of reporting and no
>>> other way to do that push people to invent even more interesting
>>> approaches then we should simply give them/you something reasonable
>>> and least intrusive to our internals.
>> The issue with "[PATCH v14 4/5] mm: support reporting free page blocks"
>> is that it cannot really handle the use case we have here if I am not
>> wrong. While a page is getting processed by the hypervisor (e.g.
>> MADV_DONTNEED), it must not get reused.
> What prevents to use the callback to get a list of pfn ranges to work on
> and then use something like start_isolate_page_range on the collected
> pfn ranges to make sure nobody steals pages from under your feet, do
> your thing and drop the isolated state afterwards.

In my series, I am doing something similar.
- Track (MAX_ORDER - 2) free pages in bitmap maintained on a per-zone
- Use __isolate_free_page on the pages marked in the bitmap and are
 still free.
- Report chunks of 16 isolated pages to the hypervisor.
- Return them back to the buddy once the request is processed.

> I am saying somethig like because you wouldn't really want a generic
> has_unmovable_pages but rather
> if (!page_ref_count(page)) {
> if (PageBuddy(page))
> iter += (1 << page_order(page)) - 1;
> continue;
> }
> subset of it.