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SubjectRe: [RFC 02/15] vfs: Change all structures to support 64 bit time
On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 09:42:36PM -0800, Deepa Dinamani wrote:
> > On Jan 11, 2016, at 04:33, Dave Chinner <> wrote:
> >
> >> On Wed, Jan 06, 2016 at 09:35:59PM -0800, Deepa Dinamani wrote:
> >> The current representation of inode times in struct inode, struct iattr,
> >> and struct kstat use struct timespec. timespec is not y2038 safe.
> >>
> >> Use scalar data types (seconds and nanoseconds stored separately) to
> >> represent timestamps in struct inode in order to maintain same size for
> >> times across 32 bit and 64 bit architectures.
> >> In addition, lay them out such that they are packed on a naturally
> >> aligned boundary on 64 bit arch as 4 bytes are used to store nsec.
> >> This makes each tuple(sec, nscec) use 12 bytes instead of 16 bytes.
> >> This will help save RAM space as inode structure is cached in memory.
> >> The other structures are transient and do not benefit from these
> >> changes.
> >
> > IMO, this decisions sends the patch series immediately down the
> > wrong path.
> There are other things the patch does that I would like to get comments
> on: inode_timespec aliases, range check, individual fs changes etc.
> These are independent of the inode timestamp representation changes.

The inode_timespec alias is part of the problem - AFAICT it exists
because you need a representation that is independent of both the
old and new in-memory structures.

The valid timestamp range stuff in the superblock is absolutely
necessary, but that's something that can be done completely
independently to the changes for supporting a differnet time storage

And the fs changes cannot really be commented on until the VFs time
representation is sorted out properly...

> >TO me, this is a severe case of premature optimisation
> > because everything gets way more complex just to save those 8 bytes,
> > especially as those holes can be filled simply by changing the
> > variable declaration order in the structure and adding a simple
> > comment.
> I had tried rearranging the structure and the pahole tool does not show
> any difference unless you pack and align the struct to 4 bytes on 64
> bit arch. The change actually saves 16 bytes on x86_64 and adds 12
> bytes on i386.
> Here is the breakdown for struct inode before and after the patch:
> x86_64:
> /* size: 544, cachelines: 9, members: 44 */ |
> /* size: 528, cachelines: 9, members: 47 */
> /* sum members: 534, holes: 3, sum holes: 10 */ |
> /* sum members: 522, holes: 2, sum holes: 6 */
> i386:
> /* size: 328, cachelines: 6, members: 45 */ |
> /* size: 340, cachelines: 6, members: 48 */
> /* sum members: 326, holes: 1, sum holes: 2 */ |
> /* sum members: 338, holes: 1, sum holes: 2 */
> According to /proc/slabinfo I estimated savings of 4MB on a lightly
> loaded system.
> > And, really, I don't like those VFS_INODE_[GS]ET_XTIME macros at
> > all; you've got to touch lots of code(*), making it all shouty and
> > harder to read. They seem only to exist because of the above
> > structural change requires an abstract timestamp accessor while
> > Given that goes away at the end o
> > the series, so should the macro - if we use a struct timespec64 in
> > the first place, it isn't even necessary as a temporary construct
> timespec64 was the first option considered here. The problem with using
> timespec64 is the long data type to represent nsec. If it were possible
> to change timespec64 nsec to int data type then it might be okay to use
> that if we are not worried about holes. I do not see why time stamps
> should have different representations on a 32 bit vs a 64 bit arch.

What's it matter? iot's irrelevant to the problem at hand.

Besides, have you looked at the existing timestamp definitions? they
use a struct timespec, which on a 64 bit system:

struct timespec i_atime; /* 88 16 */
struct timespec i_mtime; /* 104 16 */
struct timespec i_ctime; /* 120 16 */

use 2 longs and are identical to a timespec64 in everything but
name. These should just be changed to a timespec64, and we suck up
the fact it increases the size of the 32 bit inode as we have to
increase it's size to support time > y2038 anyway.

This is what I meant about premature optimisation - you've got a
wonderfully complex solution to a problem that we don't need to
solve to support timestamps >y2038. It's also why it goes down the
wrong path at this point - most of the changes are not necessary if
all we need to do is a simple timespec -> timespec64 type change and
the addition timestamp range limiting in the existing truncation

> The problem really is that
> there is more than one way of updating these attributes(timestamps in
> this particular case). The side effect of this is that we don't always
> call timespec_trunc() before assigning timestamps which can lead to
> inconsistencies between on disk and in memory inode timestamps.

That's a problem that can be fixed independently of y2038 support.
Indeed, we can be quite lazy about updating timestamps - by intent
and design we usually have different timestamps in memory compared
to on disk, which is one of the reasons why there are so many
different ways to change and update timestamps....


Dave Chinner

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