[patch 1/2] powerpc: rmb fix

Nick Piggin npiggin at suse.de
Fri May 23 14:40:52 EST 2008

On Fri, May 23, 2008 at 12:14:41PM +1000, Paul Mackerras wrote:
> Nick Piggin writes:
> > More than one device driver does raw/relaxed io accessors and expects the
> > *mb functions to order them.
> Can you point us at an example?

Uh, I might be getting confused because the semantics are completely
different eg. between powerpc and ia64.

There don't seem to actually be read*_relaxed calls that also use rmb
in the same file (although there is no reason why they might not appear).
But I must be thinking of are the raw_read accessors. They aren't ordered
on powerpc, and a few drivers appear to hope rmb() will order them.

> I don't think the semantics of the raw accessors are particularly well
> defined (it's not even defined what endianness the data comes back in)
> so I'd be surprised if there was any real definition of their
> behaviour w.r.t. barriers.

I think it is fair to say the intention of the _relaxed variants is
that they require memory barriers for ordering. No idea about raw read
or write but it appears that at least on powerpc and alpha they are

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