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SubjectRe: [PATCH v3 00/21] KVM: Dirty ring interface
On Thu, Jan 09, 2020 at 09:47:11AM -0700, Alex Williamson wrote:
> On Thu, 9 Jan 2020 09:57:08 -0500
> Peter Xu <> wrote:
> > Branch is here:
> > (based on kvm/queue)
> >
> > Please refer to either the previous cover letters, or documentation
> > update in patch 12 for the big picture. Previous posts:
> >
> > V1:
> > V2:
> >
> > The major change in V3 is that we dropped the whole waitqueue and the
> > global lock. With that, we have clean per-vcpu ring and no default
> > ring any more. The two kvmgt refactoring patches were also included
> > to show the dependency of the works.
> Hi Peter,

Hi, Alex,

> Would you recommend this style of interface for vfio dirty page
> tracking as well? This mechanism seems very tuned to sparse page
> dirtying, how well does it handle fully dirty, or even significantly
> dirty regions?

That's truely the point why I think the dirty bitmap can still be used
and should be kept. IIUC the dirty ring starts from COLO where (1)
dirty rate is very low, and (2) sync happens frequently. That's a
perfect ground for dirty ring. However it for sure does not mean that
dirty ring can solve all the issues. As you said, I believe the full
dirty is another extreme in that dirty bitmap could perform better.

> We also don't really have "active" dirty page tracking
> in vfio, we simply assume that if a page is pinned or otherwise mapped
> that it's dirty, so I think we'd constantly be trying to re-populate
> the dirty ring with pages that we've seen the user consume, which
> doesn't seem like a good fit versus a bitmap solution. Thanks,

Right, so I confess I don't know whether dirty ring is the ideal
solutioon for vfio either. Actually if we're tracking by page maps or
pinnings, then IMHO it also means that it could be more suitable to
use an modified version of dirty ring buffer (as you suggested in the
other thread), in that we can track dirty using (addr, len) range
rather than a single page address. That could be hard for KVM because
in KVM the page will be mostly trapped in 4K granularity in page
faults, and it'll also be hard to merge continuous entries with
previous ones because the userspace could be reading the entries (so
after we publish the previous 4K dirty page, we should not modify the
entry any more). VFIO should not have this restriction because the
marking of dirty page range can be atomic when the range of pages are
mapped or pinned.


Peter Xu

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