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Re: [libvirt] [PATCH 2/3] snapshot: add atomic create flag



On 03/16/2012 11:05 PM, Eric Blake wrote:
Right now, it is appallingly easy to cause qemu disk snapshots
to alter a domain then fail; for example, by requesting a two-disk
snapshot where the second disk name resides on read-only storage.
In this failure scenario, libvirt reports failure, but modifies
the live domain XML in-place to record that the first disk snapshot
was taken; and places a difficult burden on the management app
to grab the XML and reparse it to see which disks, if any, were
altered by the partial snapshot.

This patch adds a new flag where implementations can request that
the hypervisor make snapshots atomically; either no changes to
XML occur, or all disks were altered as a group.  If you request
the flag, you either get outright failure up front, or you take
advantage of hypervisor abilities to make an atomic snapshot. Of
course, drivers should prefer the atomic means even without the
flag explicitly requested.

There's no way to make snapshots 100% bulletproof - even if the
hypervisor does it perfectly atomic, we could run out of memory
during the followup tasks of updating our in-memory XML, and report
a failure.  However, these sorts of catastrophic failures are rare
and unlikely, and it is still nicer to know that either all
snapshots happened or none of them, as that is an easier state to
recover from.

* include/libvirt/libvirt.h.in
(VIR_DOMAIN_SNAPSHOT_CREATE_ATOMIC): New flag.
* src/libvirt.c (virDomainSnapshotCreateXML): Document it.
* tools/virsh.c (cmdSnapshotCreate, cmdSnapshotCreateAs): Expose it.
* tools/virsh.pod (snapshot-create, snapshot-create-as): Document
it.
---
...
+ * that it is still possible to fail after disks have changed, but only
+ * in the much rarer cases of running out of memory or disk space).
(sometimes it's not that rare (but then you've also got some other problems) :D)


ACK,

Peter


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