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Re: [dm-devel] RFC for multipath queue_if_no_path timeout.

On 09/27/2013 10:37 AM, Alasdair G Kergon wrote:
> But this still dodges the fundamental problem:
>   What is the right value to use for the timeout?
>   - How long should you wait for a path to (re)appear?
>     - In the current model, reinstating a path is a userspace 
>       responsibility.
And with my proposed patch it would still be userspace which is
setting the timeout.
Currently, no_path_retry is not a proper measure anyway, as it's
depending on the time multipathd takes to complete a path check
round. Which depends on the number of device, the state of those etc.

> The timeout, as proposed, is being used in two conflicting ways:
>   - How long to wait for path recovery when all paths went down

That would be set via the new 'no_path_timeout' feature, which would
be set instead of the (multipath-internal) no_path_retry

>   - How long to wait when the system locks without enough free
>     memory even to reinstate a path (because of broken userspace
>     code) before having multipath fail queued I/O in a desperate
>     attempt at releasing memory to assist recovery
Do we even handle that case currently?
Methinks this is precisely the use-case this is supposed to address.
When currently 'no_path_retry' is set _and_ we're running under a
low-mem condition there is a quite large likelyhood that the
multipath daemon will be killed by the OOM-killer or not able to
send any dm messages down to the kernel, as the latter most likely
require some memory allocations.

So in the current 'no_path_retry' scenario the maps would have been
created with 'queue_if_no_path', and the daemon would have to reset
the 'queue_if_no_path' flag if the no_path_retry value expires.
Which it might not be able to do so due to the above scenario.

So with the proposed 'no_path_timeout' we would enable the dm-mpath
module to terminate all outstanding I/O, irrespective on all
userland conditions. Which seems like an improvement to me ...

> The second case should point to a very short timeout.
> The first case probably wants a longer one.
> In my view the correct approach for the case Frank is discussing is to
> use a different trigger to detect the (approaching?) locking up of the
> system.   E.g.  should something related to the handling of an out
> of memory condition have a hook to instruct multipath to release such
> queued I/O?
Yeah, that was what I had planned for quite some time.
But thinking it over the no_path_timeout seems like a better
approach here.

(Plus we're hooking into the generic 'blk_timeout' mechanism, which
then would allow to blk_abort_request() to work)


Dr. Hannes Reinecke		      zSeries & Storage
hare suse de			      +49 911 74053 688
SUSE LINUX Products GmbH, Maxfeldstr. 5, 90409 Nürnberg
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