[PATCH v2] barriers: introduce smp_mb__release_acquire and update documentation

Paul E. McKenney paulmck at linux.vnet.ibm.com
Fri Oct 9 08:44:39 AEDT 2015

On Thu, Oct 08, 2015 at 01:16:38PM +0200, Peter Zijlstra wrote:
> On Thu, Oct 08, 2015 at 02:50:36PM +1100, Michael Ellerman wrote:
> > On Wed, 2015-10-07 at 08:25 -0700, Paul E. McKenney wrote:
> > > Currently, we do need smp_mb__after_unlock_lock() to be after the
> > > acquisition on PPC -- putting it between the unlock and the lock
> > > of course doesn't cut it for the cross-thread unlock/lock case.
> This ^, that makes me think I don't understand
> smp_mb__after_unlock_lock.
> How is:
> 	smp_mb__after_unlock_lock()
> 	LOCK y
> a problem? That's still a full barrier.

The problem is that I need smp_mb__after_unlock_lock() to give me
transitivity even if the UNLOCK happened on one CPU and the LOCK
on another.  For that to work, the smp_mb__after_unlock_lock() needs
to be either immediately after the acquire (the current choice) or
immediately before the release (which would also work from a purely
technical viewpoint, but I much prefer the current choice).

Or am I missing your point?

> > > I am with Peter -- we do need the benchmark results for PPC.
> > 
> > Urgh, sorry guys. I have been slowly doing some benchmarks, but time is not
> > plentiful at the moment.
> > 
> > If we do a straight lwsync -> sync conversion for unlock it looks like that
> > will cost us ~4.2% on Anton's standard context switch benchmark.
> And that does not seem to agree with Paul's smp_mb__after_unlock_lock()
> usage and would not be sufficient for the same (as of yet unexplained)
> reason.
> Why does it matter which of the LOCK or UNLOCK gets promoted to full
> barrier on PPC in order to become RCsc?

You could do either.  However, as I understand it, there is hardware for
which bc;isync is faster than lwsync.  For such hardware, it is cheaper
to upgrade the unlock from lwsync to sync than to upgrade the lock from
bc;isync to sync.  If I recall correctly, the kernel rewrites itself at
boot to select whichever of lwsync or bc;isync is better for the hardware
at hand.

							Thanx, Paul

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