[PATCH mm-unstable] mm/khugepaged: fix collapse_pte_mapped_thp() versus uffd

Jann Horn jannh at google.com
Wed Aug 23 00:39:43 AEST 2023

On Tue, Aug 22, 2023 at 4:51 AM Hugh Dickins <hughd at google.com> wrote:
> On Mon, 21 Aug 2023, Jann Horn wrote:
> > On Mon, Aug 21, 2023 at 9:51 PM Hugh Dickins <hughd at google.com> wrote:
> > > Just for this case, take the pmd_lock() two steps earlier: not because
> > > it gives any protection against this case itself, but because ptlock
> > > nests inside it, and it's the dropping of ptlock which let the bug in.
> > > In other cases, continue to minimize the pmd_lock() hold time.
> >
> > Special-casing userfaultfd like this makes me a bit uncomfortable; but
> > I also can't find anything other than userfaultfd that would insert
> > pages into regions that are khugepaged-compatible, so I guess this
> > works?
> I'm as sure as I can be that it's solely because userfaultfd breaks
> the usual rules here (and in fairness, IIRC Andrea did ask my permission
> before making it behave that way on shmem, COWing without a source page).
> Perhaps something else will want that same behaviour in future (it's
> tempting, but difficult to guarantee correctness); for now, it is just
> userfaultfd (but by saying "_armed" rather than "_missing", I'm half-
> expecting uffd to add more such exceptional modes in future).

Hm, yeah, sounds okay. (I guess we'd also run into this if we ever
wanted to make it possible to reliably install PTE markers with
madvise() or something like that, which might be nice for allowing
userspace to create guard pages without unnecessary extra VMAs...)

> > I guess an alternative would be to use a spin_trylock() instead of the
> > current pmd_lock(), and if that fails, temporarily drop the page table
> > lock and then restart from step 2 with both locks held - and at that
> > point the page table scan should be fast since we expect it to usually
> > be empty.
> That's certainly a good idea, if collapse on userfaultfd_armed private
> is anything of a common case (I doubt, but I don't know).  It may be a
> better idea anyway (saving a drop and retake of ptlock).

I was thinking it also has the advantage that it would still perform
okay if we got rid of the userfaultfd_armed() condition at some point
- though I realize that designing too much for hypothetical future
features is an antipattern.

> I gave it a try, expecting to end up with something that would lead
> me to say "I tried it, but it didn't work out well"; but actually it
> looks okay to me.  I wouldn't say I prefer it, but it seems reasonable,
> and no more complicated (as Peter rightly observes) than the original.
> It's up to you and Peter, and whoever has strong feelings about it,
> to choose between them: I don't mind (but I shall be sad if someone
> demands that I indent that comment deeper - I'm not a fan of long
> multi-line comments near column 80).

I prefer this version because it would make it easier to remove the
"userfaultfd_armed()" check in the future if we have to, but I guess
we could also always change it later if that becomes necessary, so I
don't really have strong feelings on it at this point.

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