[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Xen-devel] Re: [RFC] implement "trap-process-return"-like behavior with grant ring + evtchn

On Thu, 2011-06-23 at 08:21 +0100, Wei Liu wrote:
> Hi, all
> As you all know, I'm implementing pure-xen virtio. I mainly pay
> attention to its transport layer. In hvm case, the transport layer is
> implemented as virtual PCI. Now I'm about to replace this layer with
> grant ring + evtchn implementation.
> In the hvm case with virtual PCI transport layer, virtio works as followed:
> 1. guest writes to PCI cfg space to get trapped by hypervisor
> 2. backend dispatches and processes request
> 3. return to guest
> This is a *synchronous* communication.
> However, evtchn is by designed *asynchronous*, which means if we write
> our requests to the ring and notify the other end, we have no idea
> when it will get processed.

>  This will cause race conditions. Say:
> 1. FE changes config: that is, write to configuration space, and
> notify the other end via evtchn;
> 2. FE immediately reads configuration space, the change may not have
> been acked or recorded by BE.
> As a result, FE / BE states are inconsistent.
> NOTE: Here by "configuration space" I mean the internal states of
> devices, not limited to PCI configuration space.
> Stefano and IanC suggest FE spin-wait for an answer from BE. I come up
> with my rough design, I would like to ask you for advice.
> This is how I would do it.
> Initialization:
> 1. setup a evtchn (cfg-evtchn) and two grant rings (fe-to-be / be-to-fe).
> 2. zero-out two rings.
> FE
> 1. puts requests to fe-to-be ring, then notifies BE via cfg-evtchn.
> 2. spin waits for exactly one answer in be-to-fe ring, otherwise BUG().
> 3. consumes that answer and reset be-to-fe ring.
> BE
> 1. gets notified.
> 2. check if there is exactly one request in the ring, otherwise BUG().
> 3. consumes the request in fe-to-be ring.
> 4. writes back answer in be-to-fe ring.
> As you can see, cfg-evtchn is only used when doing fe-to-be
> notification. This allows BE to relax.

You don't need to spin in the frontend (Stefano just suggested this was
the simplest possible thing to implement) and really you want to get the
backend to notify you (via the same evtchn) when it has finished
processing and arrange for the frontend to wait for that return signal
before reading the response.

If these CFG space operations are happening in a sleeping context (as
far as the guest kernel is concerned) then you can simply treat this
returning evtchn as an IRQ and use one of the kernel's
queuing/waiting/completion type primitives to sleep until your IRQ
handler wakes you up.

If you cannot sleep in the context these activities are happening in
then I think you can use the evtchn poll hypercall to block until the
evtchn is triggered -- this is no worse than the existing blocking
behaviour while the PCI CFG space accesses are trapped, it's just
explicit in the code instead of hidden behind a magic I/O instruction

> This is only a rough design, I haven't implemented it. If anyone has
> better idea or spots any problem with this design, please let me know.
> Your advice is always welcomed.
> Wei.

Xen-devel mailing list



Lists.xenproject.org is hosted with RackSpace, monitoring our
servers 24x7x365 and backed by RackSpace's Fanatical Support®.