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authorPaul E. McKenney <paulmck@linux.vnet.ibm.com>2010-01-14 16:10:57 -0800
committerIngo Molnar <mingo@elte.hu>2010-01-16 10:25:22 +0100
commit4c54005ca438a8b46dd542b497d4f0dc2ca375e8 (patch)
tree4274fb9dcbd94480b93fecefcf83969db53461ba /Documentation/RCU/checklist.txt
parentb6407e863934965cdc66cbc244d811ceeb6f4d77 (diff)
downloadlinux-linaro-stable-4c54005ca438a8b46dd542b497d4f0dc2ca375e8.tar.gz
rcu: 1Q2010 update for RCU documentation
Add expedited functions. Review documentation and update obsolete verbiage. Also fix the advice for the RCU CPU-stall kernel configuration parameter, and document RCU CPU-stall warnings. Signed-off-by: Paul E. McKenney <paulmck@linux.vnet.ibm.com> Cc: laijs@cn.fujitsu.com Cc: dipankar@in.ibm.com Cc: mathieu.desnoyers@polymtl.ca Cc: josh@joshtriplett.org Cc: dvhltc@us.ibm.com Cc: niv@us.ibm.com Cc: peterz@infradead.org Cc: rostedt@goodmis.org Cc: Valdis.Kletnieks@vt.edu Cc: dhowells@redhat.com LKML-Reference: <12635142581866-git-send-email-> Signed-off-by: Ingo Molnar <mingo@elte.hu>
Diffstat (limited to 'Documentation/RCU/checklist.txt')
-rw-r--r--Documentation/RCU/checklist.txt200
1 files changed, 119 insertions, 81 deletions
diff --git a/Documentation/RCU/checklist.txt b/Documentation/RCU/checklist.txt
index 51525a30e8b4..767cf06a4276 100644
--- a/Documentation/RCU/checklist.txt
+++ b/Documentation/RCU/checklist.txt
@@ -8,13 +8,12 @@ would cause. This list is based on experiences reviewing such patches
over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
0. Is RCU being applied to a read-mostly situation? If the data
- structure is updated more than about 10% of the time, then
- you should strongly consider some other approach, unless
- detailed performance measurements show that RCU is nonetheless
- the right tool for the job. Yes, you might think of RCU
- as simply cutting overhead off of the readers and imposing it
- on the writers. That is exactly why normal uses of RCU will
- do much more reading than updating.
+ structure is updated more than about 10% of the time, then you
+ should strongly consider some other approach, unless detailed
+ performance measurements show that RCU is nonetheless the right
+ tool for the job. Yes, RCU does reduce read-side overhead by
+ increasing write-side overhead, which is exactly why normal uses
+ of RCU will do much more reading than updating.
Another exception is where performance is not an issue, and RCU
provides a simpler implementation. An example of this situation
@@ -35,13 +34,13 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
If you choose #b, be prepared to describe how you have handled
memory barriers on weakly ordered machines (pretty much all of
- them -- even x86 allows reads to be reordered), and be prepared
- to explain why this added complexity is worthwhile. If you
- choose #c, be prepared to explain how this single task does not
- become a major bottleneck on big multiprocessor machines (for
- example, if the task is updating information relating to itself
- that other tasks can read, there by definition can be no
- bottleneck).
+ them -- even x86 allows later loads to be reordered to precede
+ earlier stores), and be prepared to explain why this added
+ complexity is worthwhile. If you choose #c, be prepared to
+ explain how this single task does not become a major bottleneck on
+ big multiprocessor machines (for example, if the task is updating
+ information relating to itself that other tasks can read, there
+ by definition can be no bottleneck).
2. Do the RCU read-side critical sections make proper use of
rcu_read_lock() and friends? These primitives are needed
@@ -51,8 +50,10 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
actuarial risk of your kernel.
As a rough rule of thumb, any dereference of an RCU-protected
- pointer must be covered by rcu_read_lock() or rcu_read_lock_bh()
- or by the appropriate update-side lock.
+ pointer must be covered by rcu_read_lock(), rcu_read_lock_bh(),
+ rcu_read_lock_sched(), or by the appropriate update-side lock.
+ Disabling of preemption can serve as rcu_read_lock_sched(), but
+ is less readable.
3. Does the update code tolerate concurrent accesses?
@@ -62,25 +63,27 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
of ways to handle this concurrency, depending on the situation:
a. Use the RCU variants of the list and hlist update
- primitives to add, remove, and replace elements on an
- RCU-protected list. Alternatively, use the RCU-protected
- trees that have been added to the Linux kernel.
+ primitives to add, remove, and replace elements on
+ an RCU-protected list. Alternatively, use the other
+ RCU-protected data structures that have been added to
+ the Linux kernel.
This is almost always the best approach.
b. Proceed as in (a) above, but also maintain per-element
locks (that are acquired by both readers and writers)
that guard per-element state. Of course, fields that
- the readers refrain from accessing can be guarded by the
- update-side lock.
+ the readers refrain from accessing can be guarded by
+ some other lock acquired only by updaters, if desired.
This works quite well, also.
c. Make updates appear atomic to readers. For example,
- pointer updates to properly aligned fields will appear
- atomic, as will individual atomic primitives. Operations
- performed under a lock and sequences of multiple atomic
- primitives will -not- appear to be atomic.
+ pointer updates to properly aligned fields will
+ appear atomic, as will individual atomic primitives.
+ Sequences of perations performed under a lock will -not-
+ appear to be atomic to RCU readers, nor will sequences
+ of multiple atomic primitives.
This can work, but is starting to get a bit tricky.
@@ -98,9 +101,9 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
a new structure containing updated values.
4. Weakly ordered CPUs pose special challenges. Almost all CPUs
- are weakly ordered -- even i386 CPUs allow reads to be reordered.
- RCU code must take all of the following measures to prevent
- memory-corruption problems:
+ are weakly ordered -- even x86 CPUs allow later loads to be
+ reordered to precede earlier stores. RCU code must take all of
+ the following measures to prevent memory-corruption problems:
a. Readers must maintain proper ordering of their memory
accesses. The rcu_dereference() primitive ensures that
@@ -113,14 +116,21 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
The rcu_dereference() primitive is also an excellent
documentation aid, letting the person reading the code
know exactly which pointers are protected by RCU.
-
- The rcu_dereference() primitive is used by the various
- "_rcu()" list-traversal primitives, such as the
- list_for_each_entry_rcu(). Note that it is perfectly
- legal (if redundant) for update-side code to use
- rcu_dereference() and the "_rcu()" list-traversal
- primitives. This is particularly useful in code
- that is common to readers and updaters.
+ Please note that compilers can also reorder code, and
+ they are becoming increasingly aggressive about doing
+ just that. The rcu_dereference() primitive therefore
+ also prevents destructive compiler optimizations.
+
+ The rcu_dereference() primitive is used by the
+ various "_rcu()" list-traversal primitives, such
+ as the list_for_each_entry_rcu(). Note that it is
+ perfectly legal (if redundant) for update-side code to
+ use rcu_dereference() and the "_rcu()" list-traversal
+ primitives. This is particularly useful in code that
+ is common to readers and updaters. However, neither
+ rcu_dereference() nor the "_rcu()" list-traversal
+ primitives can substitute for a good concurrency design
+ coordinating among multiple updaters.
b. If the list macros are being used, the list_add_tail_rcu()
and list_add_rcu() primitives must be used in order
@@ -135,11 +145,14 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
readers. Similarly, if the hlist macros are being used,
the hlist_del_rcu() primitive is required.
- The list_replace_rcu() primitive may be used to
- replace an old structure with a new one in an
- RCU-protected list.
+ The list_replace_rcu() and hlist_replace_rcu() primitives
+ may be used to replace an old structure with a new one
+ in their respective types of RCU-protected lists.
+
+ d. Rules similar to (4b) and (4c) apply to the "hlist_nulls"
+ type of RCU-protected linked lists.
- d. Updates must ensure that initialization of a given
+ e. Updates must ensure that initialization of a given
structure happens before pointers to that structure are
publicized. Use the rcu_assign_pointer() primitive
when publicizing a pointer to a structure that can
@@ -151,16 +164,31 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
it cannot block.
6. Since synchronize_rcu() can block, it cannot be called from
- any sort of irq context. Ditto for synchronize_sched() and
- synchronize_srcu().
-
-7. If the updater uses call_rcu(), then the corresponding readers
- must use rcu_read_lock() and rcu_read_unlock(). If the updater
- uses call_rcu_bh(), then the corresponding readers must use
- rcu_read_lock_bh() and rcu_read_unlock_bh(). If the updater
- uses call_rcu_sched(), then the corresponding readers must
- disable preemption. Mixing things up will result in confusion
- and broken kernels.
+ any sort of irq context. The same rule applies for
+ synchronize_rcu_bh(), synchronize_sched(), synchronize_srcu(),
+ synchronize_rcu_expedited(), synchronize_rcu_bh_expedited(),
+ synchronize_sched_expedite(), and synchronize_srcu_expedited().
+
+ The expedited forms of these primitives have the same semantics
+ as the non-expedited forms, but expediting is both expensive
+ and unfriendly to real-time workloads. Use of the expedited
+ primitives should be restricted to rare configuration-change
+ operations that would not normally be undertaken while a real-time
+ workload is running.
+
+7. If the updater uses call_rcu() or synchronize_rcu(), then the
+ corresponding readers must use rcu_read_lock() and
+ rcu_read_unlock(). If the updater uses call_rcu_bh() or
+ synchronize_rcu_bh(), then the corresponding readers must
+ use rcu_read_lock_bh() and rcu_read_unlock_bh(). If the
+ updater uses call_rcu_sched() or synchronize_sched(), then
+ the corresponding readers must disable preemption, possibly
+ by calling rcu_read_lock_sched() and rcu_read_unlock_sched().
+ If the updater uses synchronize_srcu(), the the corresponding
+ readers must use srcu_read_lock() and srcu_read_unlock(),
+ and with the same srcu_struct. The rules for the expedited
+ primitives are the same as for their non-expedited counterparts.
+ Mixing things up will result in confusion and broken kernels.
One exception to this rule: rcu_read_lock() and rcu_read_unlock()
may be substituted for rcu_read_lock_bh() and rcu_read_unlock_bh()
@@ -212,6 +240,8 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
e. Periodically invoke synchronize_rcu(), permitting a limited
number of updates per grace period.
+ The same cautions apply to call_rcu_bh() and call_rcu_sched().
+
9. All RCU list-traversal primitives, which include
rcu_dereference(), list_for_each_entry_rcu(),
list_for_each_continue_rcu(), and list_for_each_safe_rcu(),
@@ -229,7 +259,8 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
10. Conversely, if you are in an RCU read-side critical section,
and you don't hold the appropriate update-side lock, you -must-
use the "_rcu()" variants of the list macros. Failing to do so
- will break Alpha and confuse people reading your code.
+ will break Alpha, cause aggressive compilers to generate bad code,
+ and confuse people trying to read your code.
11. Note that synchronize_rcu() -only- guarantees to wait until
all currently executing rcu_read_lock()-protected RCU read-side
@@ -239,15 +270,21 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
rcu_read_lock()-protected read-side critical sections, do -not-
use synchronize_rcu().
- If you want to wait for some of these other things, you might
- instead need to use synchronize_irq() or synchronize_sched().
+ Similarly, disabling preemption is not an acceptable substitute
+ for rcu_read_lock(). Code that attempts to use preemption
+ disabling where it should be using rcu_read_lock() will break
+ in real-time kernel builds.
+
+ If you want to wait for interrupt handlers, NMI handlers, and
+ code under the influence of preempt_disable(), you instead
+ need to use synchronize_irq() or synchronize_sched().
12. Any lock acquired by an RCU callback must be acquired elsewhere
with softirq disabled, e.g., via spin_lock_irqsave(),
spin_lock_bh(), etc. Failing to disable irq on a given
- acquisition of that lock will result in deadlock as soon as the
- RCU callback happens to interrupt that acquisition's critical
- section.
+ acquisition of that lock will result in deadlock as soon as
+ the RCU softirq handler happens to run your RCU callback while
+ interrupting that acquisition's critical section.
13. RCU callbacks can be and are executed in parallel. In many cases,
the callback code simply wrappers around kfree(), so that this
@@ -265,29 +302,30 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
not the case, a self-spawning RCU callback would prevent the
victim CPU from ever going offline.)
-14. SRCU (srcu_read_lock(), srcu_read_unlock(), and synchronize_srcu())
- may only be invoked from process context. Unlike other forms of
- RCU, it -is- permissible to block in an SRCU read-side critical
- section (demarked by srcu_read_lock() and srcu_read_unlock()),
- hence the "SRCU": "sleepable RCU". Please note that if you
- don't need to sleep in read-side critical sections, you should
- be using RCU rather than SRCU, because RCU is almost always
- faster and easier to use than is SRCU.
+14. SRCU (srcu_read_lock(), srcu_read_unlock(), synchronize_srcu(),
+ and synchronize_srcu_expedited()) may only be invoked from
+ process context. Unlike other forms of RCU, it -is- permissible
+ to block in an SRCU read-side critical section (demarked by
+ srcu_read_lock() and srcu_read_unlock()), hence the "SRCU":
+ "sleepable RCU". Please note that if you don't need to sleep
+ in read-side critical sections, you should be using RCU rather
+ than SRCU, because RCU is almost always faster and easier to
+ use than is SRCU.
Also unlike other forms of RCU, explicit initialization
and cleanup is required via init_srcu_struct() and
cleanup_srcu_struct(). These are passed a "struct srcu_struct"
that defines the scope of a given SRCU domain. Once initialized,
the srcu_struct is passed to srcu_read_lock(), srcu_read_unlock()
- and synchronize_srcu(). A given synchronize_srcu() waits only
- for SRCU read-side critical sections governed by srcu_read_lock()
- and srcu_read_unlock() calls that have been passd the same
- srcu_struct. This property is what makes sleeping read-side
- critical sections tolerable -- a given subsystem delays only
- its own updates, not those of other subsystems using SRCU.
- Therefore, SRCU is less prone to OOM the system than RCU would
- be if RCU's read-side critical sections were permitted to
- sleep.
+ synchronize_srcu(), and synchronize_srcu_expedited(). A given
+ synchronize_srcu() waits only for SRCU read-side critical
+ sections governed by srcu_read_lock() and srcu_read_unlock()
+ calls that have been passed the same srcu_struct. This property
+ is what makes sleeping read-side critical sections tolerable --
+ a given subsystem delays only its own updates, not those of other
+ subsystems using SRCU. Therefore, SRCU is less prone to OOM the
+ system than RCU would be if RCU's read-side critical sections
+ were permitted to sleep.
The ability to sleep in read-side critical sections does not
come for free. First, corresponding srcu_read_lock() and
@@ -311,12 +349,12 @@ over a rather long period of time, but improvements are always welcome!
destructive operation, and -only- -then- invoke call_rcu(),
synchronize_rcu(), or friends.
- Because these primitives only wait for pre-existing readers,
- it is the caller's responsibility to guarantee safety to
- any subsequent readers.
+ Because these primitives only wait for pre-existing readers, it
+ is the caller's responsibility to guarantee that any subsequent
+ readers will execute safely.
-16. The various RCU read-side primitives do -not- contain memory
- barriers. The CPU (and in some cases, the compiler) is free
- to reorder code into and out of RCU read-side critical sections.
- It is the responsibility of the RCU update-side primitives to
- deal with this.
+16. The various RCU read-side primitives do -not- necessarily contain
+ memory barriers. You should therefore plan for the CPU
+ and the compiler to freely reorder code into and out of RCU
+ read-side critical sections. It is the responsibility of the
+ RCU update-side primitives to deal with this.