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Re: [libvirt] [PATCH 1/4] libxl: implement NUMA capabilities reporting

[Moving the conversation on @xen-devel and adding Jan, as that seems
more appropriate]

[Jan, this came up as I'm implementing some NUMA bits in libvirt but, as
you see, the core of Jim's question is purely about Xen]

On lun, 2013-07-01 at 16:47 -0600, Jim Fehlig wrote:
> On my non-NUMA test machine I have the cell memory reported as
>            <memory unit='KiB'>9175040</memory>
Which is 8960, if divided by 1024, so at least it's consistent.


> The machine has 8G of memory, running xen 4.3 rc6, with dom0_mem=1024M.  'xl 
> info --numa' says
> total_memory           : 8190
> ...
> numa_info              :
> node:    memsize    memfree    distances
>     0:      8960       7116      10
> Why is the node memsize > total_memory?

Mmm... Interesting question. I really never paid attention to this...
Jan (or anyone else), is that something known and/or expected?

I went checking this down in Xen, and here's what I found.

total_memory is: info.total_pages/((1 << 20) / vinfo->pagesize)

where 'info' is what libxl_get_physinfo() provides. On its turn,
libxl_get_physinfo() is xc_physinfo(), which is XEN_SYSCTL_physinfo,
which uses total_pages, which is assigned the number of pages, down in
__start_xen(), as it results from parsing the E820 map (looking for RAM

OTOH, memsize comes from libxl_get_numainfo(), which is xc_numainfo(),
which is XEN_SYSCTL_numainfo, which puts in memsize what
node_spanned_pages(<node_id>) says.

That seems to come, on a NUMA box, from the parsing of SRAT, and on a
non-NUMA box, from just (start_pfn-end_pfn) (in pages, of course).

Anyway, on my NUMA box, I see something similar to what Jim sees on a
non-NUMA one:

# xl info -n
total_memory           : 12285
numa_info              :
node:    memsize    memfree    distances
   0:      6144         23      10,20
   1:      6720        104      20,10

Where 6144+6720=12864 > 12285

Looking at what Xen says during boot, I see this (the [*], [+], [=] and
[|] are mine):

(XEN) Xen-e820 RAM map:
(XEN)  0000000000000000 - 0000000000096000 (usable)
(XEN)  00000000000f0000 - 0000000000100000 (reserved)   [*]
(XEN)  0000000000100000 - 00000000dbdf9c00 (usable)
(XEN)  00000000dbdf9c00 - 00000000dbe4bc00 (ACPI NVS)   [+]
(XEN)  00000000dbe4bc00 - 00000000dbe4dc00 (ACPI data)  [=]
(XEN)  00000000dbe4dc00 - 00000000dc000000 (reserved)   [|]
(XEN)  00000000f8000000 - 00000000fd000000 (reserved)
(XEN)  00000000fe000000 - 00000000fed00400 (reserved)
(XEN)  00000000fee00000 - 00000000fef00000 (reserved)
(XEN)  00000000ffb00000 - 0000000100000000 (reserved)
(XEN)  0000000100000000 - 0000000324000000 (usable)
(XEN) System RAM: 12285MB (12580412kB)

And my math says that 12285MB is the sum of the areas marked as
(usable), i.e., I guess, what during parsing is recognised as
E820_RAM... which makes total sense.

A bit below that I have this:

(XEN) SRAT: Node 1 PXM 1 0-dc000000
(XEN) SRAT: Node 1 PXM 1 100000000-1a4000000
(XEN) SRAT: Node 0 PXM 0 1a4000000-324000000

Which, after the needed calculations, gives exactly the same results
than memsize-s in `xl info -n'.

Now, if I add up the [*], [+], [=] and [|] regions above, and then
subtract that from node 1's PXMs, I see that node 1 has only ~6141MB of
usable RAM, instead of 6720MB.

And in fact, 6720-6141=579, just as much as 12864-12285=579.

So, if I haven't messed up with the calculations, it looks like that
Xen, when reporting to the upper layers the amount of memory it has
available, does filter out the non-RAM regions, if this happens via
XEN_SYSCTL_physinfo (i.e., by parsing E820), while it does not do that,
if this happens via XEN_SYSCTL_numainfo (i.e., by parsing ACPI SRAT).

What I'm not sure about is whether or not that was something
known/intended and whether or not it is something we should be concerned

Thanks and Regards,

<<This happens because I choose it to happen!>> (Raistlin Majere)
Dario Faggioli, Ph.D, http://about.me/dario.faggioli
Senior Software Engineer, Citrix Systems R&D Ltd., Cambridge (UK)

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