Re: [kernel-hardening] [RFC PATCH v2 2/3] xpfo: Only put previous userspace pages into the hot cache

From: Juerg Haefliger
Date: Wed Sep 21 2016 - 01:32:53 EST

On 09/14/2016 04:48 PM, Dave Hansen wrote:
>> On 09/02/2016 10:39 PM, Dave Hansen wrote:
>>> On 09/02/2016 04:39 AM, Juerg Haefliger wrote:
>>> Does this
>>> just mean that kernel allocations usually have to pay the penalty to
>>> convert a page?
>> Only pages that are allocated for userspace (gfp & GFP_HIGHUSER == GFP_HIGHUSER) which were
>> previously allocated for the kernel (gfp & GFP_HIGHUSER != GFP_HIGHUSER) have to pay the penalty.
>>> So, what's the logic here? You're assuming that order-0 kernel
>>> allocations are more rare than allocations for userspace?
>> The logic is to put reclaimed kernel pages into the cold cache to
>> postpone their allocation as long as possible to minimize (potential)
>> TLB flushes.
> OK, but if we put them in the cold area but kernel allocations pull them
> from the hot cache, aren't we virtually guaranteeing that kernel
> allocations will have to to TLB shootdown to convert a page?

No. Allocations for the kernel never require a TLB shootdown. Only allocations for userspace (and
only if the page was previously a kernel page).

> It seems like you also need to convert all kernel allocations to pull
> from the cold area.

Kernel allocations can continue to pull from the hot cache. Maybe introduce another cache for the
userspace pages? But I'm not sure what other implications this might have.


Attachment: signature.asc
Description: OpenPGP digital signature