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[Linux-cluster] Re: [NFS] [RFC] NLM lock failover admin interface

Neil Brown wrote:

Could you please explain to me what "active-active failover for local
filesystem such as ext3" means
Clustering is a profilic subject so the term may mean different things to different people. The setup we discuss here is to move an NFS service from one server to the other while both servers are up and running (active-active). The goal is not to disturb other NFS services that are not involved with the transition.

It sounds like the filesystem is active on two nodes at once, which of
course cannot work for ext3, so I am confused.
And if you are doing "failover", what has failed?

The load-balancing scenario makes sense (at least so far...).
Local filesystem such as ext3 will never be mounted on more than two nodes but cluster filesystems (e.g. our GFS) will. Moving ext3 normally implies error conditions (a true failover) though in rare cases, it may be kicked off for load balancing purpose. Current GFS locking has the "node-id" concept - the easiest way (at this moment) for virtual IP to float around is to drop the locks and let NLM reclaim the locks from the new server.

Our two export flags mean VERY different things.
Mine says 'locks against this export are per-server-ip-address'.
Yours says (I think) 'remove all lockd locks from this export' and is
really an unexport flag, not an export flag.

And this makes it not really workable.  We no-longer require the user
of the nfssvc syscall to unexport filesystems.  Infact nfs-utils doesn't
use it at all if /proc/fs/nfsd is mounted.  filesystems are unexported
by their entry in the export cache expiring, or the cache being
The important thing (for me) is the vfsmount reference count which can only be properly decreased when unexport is triggered. Without decreasing the vfsmount, ext3 can not be un-mounted (and we need to umount ext3 upon failover). I havn't looked into community versions of kernel source for a while (but I'll check). So what can I do to ensure this will happen ? - i.e., after the filesystem has been accessed by nfsd, how can I safely un-mount it without shuting down nfsd (and/or lockd) ?
'struct nlm_file' is a structure that is entirely local to lockd.
It does not feature in any of the interface between lockd and any
other part of the kernel.  It is not part of any credible KABI.
The other changes I suggest involve adding an exported symbol to
lockd, which does change the KABI but in a completely back-compatible
way, and re-interpreting the return value of a callout. That could not break any external module - it could only break
someone's setup if they had an alternate lockd module, but I don't
your KABI policy allows people to replace modules and stay supported,
Yes, you're right ! I looked into the wrong code (well, it was late in the night so I was not very functional at that moment). Had some prototype code where I transported the nlm_file from one server to another server , experimenting auto-reclaiming locks without stated. I exported the nlm_file list there. So let's forget about this
 One is the multiple-lockd-threads idea.
I'm losing interest in the multiple-lockd-threads approach myself (for
the moment anyway :-)
Good! because I'm not sure whether we'll hit scalibility issue or not (100 nfs services implies 100 lockd threads !).

However I would be against trying to re-use rpc.lockd - that was a
mistake that is best forgotten.
Highlight this :) ... Give me some comfort feelings that I'm not the only person who would make mistakes.

If the above approach were taken, then I don't think you need anything
more than
  echo aa.bb.cc.dd > /proc/fs/nfsd/vserver_unlock
(or whatever), though it you really want to wrap that in a shell
script that might be ok.
This is funny - so we go back to /proc. OK with me :)

Only sort-of back to /proc.  /proc/fs/nfsd is a separate filesystem
which happens to be mounted there normally.
The unexport system call goes through this exact same filesystem
(though it is somewhat under-the-hood) so at that level, we are
really propose the same style of interface implementation.
But again, I'm OK with /proc approach. However, with /proc approach, we
may need socket address (since not every export uses fsid and devno is
not easy to get).

Absolutely. We need a socket address. As part of this process you are shutting down an interface. We know
(or can easily discover) the address of that interface.  That is
exactly the address that we feed to nfsd.
Now, it looks good ! Will do the following:

1. Futher understand the steps to make sure we can un-mount ext3 due to "unexport" method changes. 2. Start to code to the /proc interface and make sure "rpc.stated -H"can work (lock reclaiming needs it). Will keep NFS v4 in mind as well.

By the way, there is a socket state-change-handler (TCP only) and/or network interface notification routine that seem to be workable (your previous thoughts). However, I don't plan to keep exploring that possibility since we now have a simple and workable method in place.

-- Wendy

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