Re: [PATCH 09/20] ext4: Initialize timestamps limits

From: Arnd Bergmann
Date: Fri Aug 02 2019 - 06:40:00 EST

On Fri, Aug 2, 2019 at 12:43 AM Theodore Y. Ts'o <tytso@xxxxxxx> wrote:
> On Thu, Aug 01, 2019 at 12:18:28PM -0700, Deepa Dinamani wrote:
> > > Say you have a filesystem with s_inode_size > 128 where not all of the
> > > ondisk inodes have been upgraded to i_extra_isize > 0 and therefore
> > > don't support nanoseconds or times beyond 2038. I think this happens on
> > > ext3 filesystems that reserved extra space for inode attrs that are
> > > subsequently converted to ext4?
> >
> > I'm confused about ext3 being converted to ext4. If the converted
> > inodes have extra space, then ext4_iget() will start using the extra
> > space when it modifies the on disk inode, won't it?i
> It is possible that you can have an ext3 file system with (for
> example) 256 byte inodes, and all of the extra space was used for
> extended attributes, then ext4 won't have the extra space available.
> This is going toh be on an inode-by-inode basis, and if an extended
> attribute is motdified or deleted, the space would become available,t
> and then inode would start getting a higher resolution timestamp.

Is it correct to assume that this kind of file would have to be
created using the ext3.ko file system implementation that was
removed in linux-4.3, but not using ext2.ko or ext4.ko (which
would always set the extended timestamps even in "-t ext2" or
"-t ext3" mode)?

I tried to reproduce this on a modern kernel and with and
moderately old debugfs (1.42.13) but failed.

> I really don't think it's worth worrying about that, though. It's
> highly unlikely ext3 file systems will be still be in service by the
> time it's needed in 2038. And if so, it's highly unlikely they would
> be converted to ext4.

As the difference is easily visible even before y2038 by using
utimensat(old_inode, future_date) on a file, we should at least
decide what the sanest behavior is that we can easily implement,
and then document what is expected to happen here.

If we check for s_min_extra_isize instead of s_inode_size
to determine s_time_gran/s_time_max, we would warn
at mount time as well as and consistently truncate all
timestamps to full 32-bit seconds, regardless of whether
there is actually space or not.

Alternatively, we could warn if s_min_extra_isize is
too small, but use i_inode_size to determine
s_time_gran/s_time_max anyway.

>From looking at e2fsprogs git history, I see that
s_min_extra_isize has always been set by mkfs since
2008, but I'm not sure if there would have been a
case in which it remains set but the ext3.ko would
ignore it and use that space anyway.