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SubjectRe: [PATCH v8 1/3] x86: Expand exception table to allow new handling options
On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 10:39 PM, Brian Gerst <> wrote:
> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 8:52 PM, Andy Lutomirski <> wrote:
>> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 12:49 PM, Tony Luck <> wrote:
>>> Huge amounts of help from Andy Lutomirski and Borislav Petkov to
>>> produce this. Andy provided the inspiration to add classes to the
>>> exception table with a clever bit-squeezing trick, Boris pointed
>>> out how much cleaner it would all be if we just had a new field.
>>> Linus Torvalds blessed the expansion with:
>>> I'd rather not be clever in order to save just a tiny amount of space
>>> in the exception table, which isn't really criticial for anybody.
>>> The third field is a simple integer indexing into an array of handler
>>> functions (I thought it couldn't be a relative pointer like the other
>>> fields because a module may have its ex_table loaded more than 2GB away
>>> from the handler function - but that may not be actually true. But the
>>> integer is pretty flexible, we are only really using low two bits now).
>>> We start out with three handlers:
>>> 0: Legacy - just jumps the to fixup IP
>>> 1: Fault - provide the trap number in %ax to the fixup code
>>> 2: Cleaned up legacy for the uaccess error hack
>> I think I preferred the relative function pointer approach.
>> Also, I think it would be nicer if the machine check code would invoke
>> the handler regardless of which handler (or class) is selected. Then
>> the handlers that don't want to handle #MC can just reject them.
>> Also, can you make the handlers return bool instead of int?
> I'm hashing up an idea that could eliminate alot of text in the .fixup
> section, but it needs the integer handler method to work. We have
> alot of fixup code that does "mov $-EFAULT, reg; jmp xxxx". If we
> encode the register in the third word, the handler can be generic and
> no fixup code for each user access would be needed. That would
> recover alot of the memory used by expanding the exception table.

On second thought, this could still be implemented with a relative
function pointer. We'd just need a separate function for each

Brian Gerst

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