Re: [PATCH v2 1/3] KVM: x86: Allow CPU to force vendor-specific TDP level
From: Sean Christopherson
Date: Mon Aug 09 2021 - 11:33:44 EST
On Mon, Aug 09, 2021, Yu Zhang wrote:
> On Sun, Aug 08, 2021 at 11:33:44PM -0500, Wei Huang wrote:
> > On 8/8/21 11:27 PM, Yu Zhang wrote:
> > > On Sun, Aug 08, 2021 at 11:11:40PM -0500, Wei Huang wrote:
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > On 8/8/21 10:58 PM, Yu Zhang wrote:
> > > > > On Sun, Aug 08, 2021 at 02:26:56PM -0500, Wei Huang wrote:
> > > > > > AMD future CPUs will require a 5-level NPT if host CR4.LA57 is set.
> > > > >
> > > > > Sorry, but why? NPT is not indexed by HVA.
> > > >
> > > > NPT is not indexed by HVA - it is always indexed by GPA. What I meant is NPT
> > > > page table level has to be the same as the host OS page table: if 5-level
> > > > page table is enabled in host OS (CR4.LA57=1), guest NPT has to 5-level too.
> > >
> > > I know what you meant. But may I ask why?
> > I don't have a good answer for it. From what I know, VMCB doesn't have a
> > field to indicate guest page table level. As a result, hardware relies on
> > host CR4 to infer NPT level.
> I guess you mean not even in the N_CR3 field of VMCB?
Correct, nCR3 is a basically a pure representation of a regular CR3.
> Then it's not a broken design - it's a limitation of SVM. :)
That's just a polite way of saying it's a broken design ;-)
Joking aside, NPT opted for a semblance of backwards compatibility at the cost of
having to carry all the baggage that comes with a legacy design. Keeping the core
functionality from IA32 paging presumably miminizes design and hardware costs, and
required minimal enabling in hypervisors. The downside is that it's less flexible
than EPT and has a few warts, e.g. shadowing NPT is gross because the host can't
easily mirror L1's desired paging mode.