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SubjectRe: [PATCH V4 10/15] blk-throttle: add a simple idle detection
Hello, Shaohua.

On Wed, Nov 23, 2016 at 05:15:18PM -0800, Shaohua Li wrote:
> > Hmm... I'm not sure thinktime is the best measure here. Think time is
> > used by cfq mainly to tell the likely future behavior of a workload so
> > that cfq can take speculative actions on the prediction. However,
> > given that the implemented high limit behavior tries to provide a
> > certain level of latency target, using the predictive thinktime to
> > regulate behavior might lead to too unpredictable behaviors.
> Latency just reflects one side of the IO. Latency and think time haven't any
> relationship. For example, a cgroup dispatching 1 IO per second can still have
> high latency. If we only take latency account, we will think the cgroup is
> busy, which is not justified.

Yes, the two are indepndent metrics; however, whether a cgroup is
considered idle or not affects whether blk-throttle will adhere to the
latency target or not. Thinktime is a magic number which can be good
but whose behavior can be very difficult to predict from outside the
black box. What I was trying to say was that putting in thinktime
here can greatly weaken the configured latency target in unobvious

> > Moreover, I don't see why we need to bother with predictions anyway.
> > cfq needed it but I don't think that's the case for blk-throtl. It
> > can just provide idle threshold where a cgroup which hasn't issued an
> > IO over that threshold is considered idle. That'd be a lot easier to
> > understand and configure from userland while providing a good enough
> > mechanism to prevent idle cgroups from clamping down utilization for
> > too long.
> We could do this, but it will only work for very idle workload, eg, the
> workload is completely idle. If workload dispatches IO sporadically, this will
> likely not work. The average think time is more precise for predication.

But we can increase sharing by upping the target latency. That should
be the main knob - if low, the user wants stricter service guarantee
at the cost of lower overall utilization; if high, the workload can
deal with higher latency and the system can achieve higher overall
utilization. I think the idle detection should be an extra mechanism
which can be used to ignore cgroup-disk combinations which are staying
idle for a long time.



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