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Re: [dm-devel] workqueues and percpu (was: [PATCH] dm: remake of the verity target)



Adding a bit..

On Thu, Mar 08, 2012 at 04:33:09PM -0800, Tejun Heo wrote:
> ISTR there was something already broken about having specific CPU
> assumption w/ workqueue even before cmwq when using queue_work_on()
> unless it was explicitly synchronizing using cpu hotplug callback.
> Hmmm... what was it... I think it was that there was no protection
> against queueing on workqueue on dead CPU and workqueue was flushed
> only once during cpu shutdown meaning that queue_work_on() or
> requeueing work items could end up queued on a workqueue of a dead
> CPU.

I think the crux of the problem is that we didn't have the interface
to indicate the intention of workqueue users.  Per-cpu workqueues were
the normal ones and the per-cpuness is used both as optimization
(local queueing is much cheaper and a work item is likely to access
the same stuff its queuer was accessing) and pinning.  Single-threaded
workqueues were used for both non-reentrancy and resource
optimization.

For the short term, the easiest fix would be adding flush_work_sync()
from cpu hotplug callback for the pinned ones.  For the longer term, I
think the most natural fix would be making work items queued with
explicit queue_work_on() handled differently and adding debug code to
enforce it.

Thanks.

-- 
tejun


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