RCU and lockdep checking
All flavors of RCU have lockdep checking available, so that lockdep is
aware of when each task enters and leaves any flavor of RCU read-side
critical section. Each flavor of RCU is tracked separately (but note
that this is not the case in 2.6.32 and earlier). This allows lockdep's
tracking to include RCU state, which can sometimes help when debugging
deadlocks and the like.
In addition, RCU provides the following primitives that check lockdep's
rcu_read_lock_held() for normal RCU.
rcu_read_lock_bh_held() for RCU-bh.
rcu_read_lock_sched_held() for RCU-sched.
srcu_read_lock_held() for SRCU.
These functions are conservative, and will therefore return 1 if they
aren't certain (for example, if CONFIG_DEBUG_LOCK_ALLOC is not set).
This prevents things like WARN_ON(!rcu_read_lock_held()) from giving false
positives when lockdep is disabled.
In addition, a separate kernel config parameter CONFIG_PROVE_RCU enables
checking of rcu_dereference() primitives:
Check for RCU read-side critical section.
Check for RCU-bh read-side critical section.
Check for RCU-sched read-side critical section.
Check for SRCU read-side critical section.
Use explicit check expression "c". This is useful in
code that is invoked by both readers and updaters.
Don't check. (Use sparingly, if at all.)
Use explicit check expression "c", and omit all barriers
and compiler constraints. This is useful when the data
structure cannot change, for example, in code that is
invoked only by updaters.
Return the value of the pointer and omit all barriers,
but retain the compiler constraints that prevent duplicating
or coalescsing. This is useful when when testing the
value of the pointer itself, for example, against NULL.
The rcu_dereference_check() check expression can be any boolean
expression, but would normally include one of the rcu_read_lock_held()
family of functions and a lockdep expression. However, any boolean
expression can be used. For a moderately ornate example, consider
file = rcu_dereference_check(fdt->fd[fd],
atomic_read(&files->count) == 1);
This expression picks up the pointer "fdt->fd[fd]" in an RCU-safe manner,
and, if CONFIG_PROVE_RCU is configured, verifies that this expression
is used in:
1. An RCU read-side critical section, or
2. with files->file_lock held, or
3. on an unshared files_struct.
In case (1), the pointer is picked up in an RCU-safe manner for vanilla
RCU read-side critical sections, in case (2) the ->file_lock prevents
any change from taking place, and finally, in case (3) the current task
is the only task accessing the file_struct, again preventing any change
from taking place. If the above statement was invoked only from updater
code, it could instead be written as follows:
file = rcu_dereference_protected(fdt->fd[fd],
atomic_read(&files->count) == 1);
This would verify cases #2 and #3 above, and furthermore lockdep would
complain if this was used in an RCU read-side critical section unless one
of these two cases held. Because rcu_dereference_protected() omits all
barriers and compiler constraints, it generates better code than do the
other flavors of rcu_dereference(). On the other hand, it is illegal
to use rcu_dereference_protected() if either the RCU-protected pointer
or the RCU-protected data that it points to can change concurrently.
There are currently only "universal" versions of the rcu_assign_pointer()
and RCU list-/tree-traversal primitives, which do not (yet) check for
being in an RCU read-side critical section. In the future, separate
versions of these primitives might be created.