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Re: [Xen-devel] xenfs: race condition on xenstore watch

On 31/05/13 14:45, Jan Beulich wrote:
On 28.05.13 at 14:55, Konrad Rzeszutek Wilk <konrad.wilk@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
On Wed, May 15, 2013 at 05:51:06PM +0100, Jonathan Davies wrote:
Normally, the userspace process gets an "OK" from xenfs and then the
watch fires immediately after. Occasionally, this happens the other way
around: the watch fires before the driver sends "OK", which confuses
the xenstore-watch client. It seems to me that the client is within its
rights to expect the "OK" first.

Now that I look at this another time, I wonder how this behavior
can be guaranteed even with your patch: xenbus_write_watch()
sends the reply by calling queue_reply() followed by wake_up(),
so the reply getting delivered and the watch firing appear to be
inherently asynchronous anyway, and your patch just reduces
the race window. Am I overlooking something here?

There's no call to wake_up() in xenbus_write_watch(), as far as I can see...

The key thing is to guarantee that xenbus_write_watch()'s call to queue_reply() (for the "OK" message) executes before the watch_fired() callback -- registered by the call to register_xenbus_watch() -- could be called-back. Given that watch_fired() also takes the reply_mutex before its own calls to queue_reply() and wake_up(), this behaviour can be guaranteed by taking the reply_mutex before registering the callback.

Take the (non-reentrant) reply_mutex before calling
register_xenbus_watch to prevent the watch_fired callback from writing
anything until the "OK" has been sent.

Should that perhaps be done inside the msg_type == XS_WATCH code (with a
bool that would determine whether an reply_mutex has been taken?)

As in, is there no need to take this mutex if msg_type != XS_WATCH?

As said in an earlier reply, I also think that it would be preferable
to shrink the locked region as much as possible.

v2 of the patch will have a much tighter locked region. I'll post that once I've tested it.


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