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Re: [dm-devel] DM-RAID1 data corruption

Neil Brown wrote:
> On Tuesday June 23, tyasui redhat com wrote:
>>>> MD-RAID1 solves this problem by having counters in superblocks on both 
>>>> legs. If some leg dies, the counter on the other devices is increased. If 
>>>> the dead disk comes online again, it is found that it has old counter and 
>>>> cannot be trusted.
>>>> Would it be possible to extend a logical volume when converting it to a 
>>>> raid1 and use the last area of the volume as a superblock?
>>>> Mikulas
>>> This is an old thread, I am just trying to revitalize it! :-) How about
>>> dm-raid1 taking superblock storage as arguments in the command line,
>>> just like the log device? The superblock storage is entirely managed by
>>> the kernel, LVM just allocates it. Error handling can be instant this
>>> way. LVM can auto convert the exiting mirrors to this kind of mirrors if
>>> space is available.
>> Interesting idea. The superblock storage managed by kernel is really
>> important to handle an error quickly inside the kernel.
> I don't think that it is important to handle errors quickly - they
> really shouldn't happen often enough that speed is an issue.  All you
> need to do is handle errors correctly.

Not really. Quick error handling is not for preventing this issue
but shorten system downtime. Fixing this issue is most important,
but it is better to have discuss other approach, too.

> I would suggest that you simply get raid1 to block any write requests
> until all drive failures have been acknowledged by userspace.
> So you would need to differentiate between an acknowledged drive
> failure and an unacknowledged failure.  Writes block when ever there
> are unacknowledged failures.
> Then you need a message that can be sent to the raid1 to acknowledge
> the failure of a particular device.
> 'suspend' would need to fail if there are any unacknowledged failures
> as otherwise it would block.

As we discuss in this thread, your suggestion is quite similar to what
malahal proposed more than one year ago.

malahal us ibm com wrote:
> > Look at this patch
> > http://permalink.gmane.org/gmane.linux.kernel.device-mapper.devel/4973
> >
> > It essentially generates an uevet and waits for the user level code to
> > act on it and send a message to unblock it.

This is a simple approach, but all write I/Os are blocked before write
errors are processed by userspace (dmeventd). Depending on the error,
such as timeout, the recovery procedure in userspace may take a long
time and application sensitive to delay will have another problem.

superblock approach may solve this data corruption issue without an
additional delay. When dm-raid1 detects a write error, it can disable
the mirror leg quickly and ask userspace to process aftertreatment.

I would like to continue discussion how to fix this issue.


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