Re: [PATCH] Documentation: dmaengine: Add a documentation for the dma controller API

From: Vinod Koul
Date: Thu Jul 31 2014 - 08:05:20 EST

On Thu, Jul 31, 2014 at 09:44:40AM +0200, Maxime Ripard wrote:
> Hi Vinod,
> On Wed, Jul 30, 2014 at 09:36:07PM +0530, Vinod Koul wrote:
> > On Wed, Jul 30, 2014 at 06:03:13PM +0200, Maxime Ripard wrote:
> > > The dmaengine is neither trivial nor properly documented at the moment, which
> > > means a lot of trial and error development, which is not that good for such a
> > > central piece of the system.
> > >
> > > Attempt at making such a documentation.
> >
> > Did you miss Documentation/dmaengine.txt, lots of this is already covered
> > there. But yes i would be really glad to know what isnt, so that we can fix
> > that.
> I didn't miss it. But I feel like it describes quite nicely the slave
> API, but doesn't help at all whenever you're writing a DMAengine driver.
> The first lines of the existing document makes it quite clear too.
> There's still a bit of duplication, but I don't feel it's such a big
> deal.
And that made me think that you might have missed it.

I am okay for idea to have this document but it needs to co-exist one. No
point in duplicating as it can create ambiguity in future.
> What I'd like to do with the documentation I just sent is basically
> have a clear idea whenever you step into dmaengine what you can/cannot
> do, and have a reference document explaining what's expected by the
> framework, and hopefully have unified drivers that follow this
> pattern.
Sure, can you pls modify this to avoid duplication. I would be happy to
apply that :)

> Because, for the moment, we're pretty much left in the dark with
> different drivers doing the same thing in completetely different ways,
> with basically no way to tell if it's either the framework that
> requires such behaviour, or if the author was just feeling creative.
> There's numerous examples for this at the moment:
> - The GFP flags, with different drivers using either GFP_ATOMIC,
> GFP_NOWAIT or GFP_KERNEL in the same functions
> - Having to set device_slave_caps or not?
> - Some drivers use dma_run_depedencies, some other don't
> - That might just be my experience, but judging from previous
> commits, DMA_PRIVATE is completely obscure, and we just set it
> because it was making it work, without knowing what it was
> supposed to do.
> - etc.

Thanks for highlighting we should definitely add these in Documentation

> And basically, we have no way to tell at the moment which one is
> right and which one needs fixing.
> The corollary being that it cripples the whole community ability to
> maintain the framework and make it evolve.
> > > + * device_slave_caps
> > > + - Isn't that redundant with the cap_mask already?
> > > + - Only a few drivers seem to implement it
> > For audio to know what your channel can do rather than hardcoding it
> Ah, yes, I see it now. It's not related to the caps mask at all.
> Just out of curiosity, wouldn't it be better to move this to the
> framework, and have these informations provided through the struct
> dma_device? Or would it have some non-trivial side-effects?
Well the problem is ability to have this queried uniformly from all drivers
across subsystems. If we can do this that would be nice.
> > > + * dma cookies?
> > cookie is dma transaction representation which is monotonically incrementing
> > number.
> Ok, and it identifies a unique dma_async_tx_descriptor, right?
Yup and this basically represents transactions you have submitted. Thats why
cookie is allocated at tx_submit.




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