[PATCH v5 1/3] powerpc: make fadump resilient with memory add/remove events

Sourabh Jain sourabhjain at linux.ibm.com
Fri Nov 24 18:21:17 AEDT 2023

Hello Michael,

On 22/11/23 18:22, Michael Ellerman wrote:
> Sourabh Jain <sourabhjain at linux.ibm.com> writes:
>> On 22/11/23 10:47, Michael Ellerman wrote:
>>> Aneesh Kumar K V <aneesh.kumar at linux.ibm.com> writes:
>>> ...
>>>> I am not sure whether we need to add all the complexity to enable supporting different fadump kernel
>>>> version. Is that even a possible use case with fadump? Can't we always assume that with fadump the
>>>> crash kernel and fadump kernel will be same version?
>>> How sure are we of that?
>>> Don't we go through grub when we boot into the 2nd kernel. And so
>>> couldn't it choose to boot a different kernel, for whatever reason.
>>> I don't think we need to support different pt_reg / cpumask sizes, but
>>> requiring the exact same kernel version is too strict I think.
>> Agree.
>>> But maybe I'm wrong. Would be good to hear what distro folks think.
>> How about checking fadump crash info header compatibility in the
>> following way?
>> static bool is_fadump_header_compatible(struct fadump_crash_info_header
>> *fdh)
>> {
>>       if (fdh->magic_number == FADUMP_CRASH_INFO_MAGIC_OLD) {
>>           pr_err("Old magic number, can't process the dump.");
>>           return false;
>>       }
>>       if (fdh->magic_number != FADUMP_CRASH_INFO_MAGIC) {
>>           pr_err("Fadump header is corrupted.");
>>           return false;
>>       }
>>       /*
>>        * If the kernel version of the first/crashed kernel and the
>> second/fadump
>>        * kernel is not same, then only collect the dump if the size of all
>>        * non-primitive type members of the fadump header is the same
>> across kernels.
>>        */
>>       if (strcmp(fdh->kernel_version, init_uts_ns.name.release)) {
> I don't think the kernel version check is necessary?

I didn't find a place where pt_regs members are accessed to take
a decision in fadump kernel. we just copy the pt_regs in fadump kernel.

So I think as long as size is same across kernels, we are good.

>>           if (fdh->pt_regs_sz != sizeof(struct pt_regs) || fdh->cpu_mask_sz != sizeof(struct cpumask)) {
>>               pr_err("Fadump header size mismatch.\n")
>>               return false;
> Yeah I think that works.
>>           } else
>>               pr_warn("Kernel version mismatch; dump data is unreliable.\n");
>>       }
>>       return true;
>> }
>> And the new fadump crash info header will be: As suggested by Hari.
>> /* fadump crash info structure */
>> struct fadump_crash_info_header {
>>       u64        magic_number;
>> +  u32        version;
> Do we need version? We're effectively using the magic_number as a
> version already. Having an actual version would allow us to make
> backward compatible changes in future, but it's not clear we'll need or
> want to do that.
Agree that currently version field is not used but I added a version 
field to
make the fadump header structure compatible with future changes without
changing the magic number.

I will add a comment on how version field should be utilized if one 
changes fadump
header in future.

>>       u32        crashing_cpu;
>>       u64        elfcorehdr_addr;
>> +  u64        elfcorehdr_size;
>> +  u64        vmcoreinfo_raddr;
>> +  u64        vmcoreinfo_size;
>> +  u8          kernel_version[__NEW_UTS_LEN + 1];
>> +  u32        pt_regs_sz;
>>       struct pt_regs    regs;
>> +  u32        cpu_mask_sz;
> Typically you would put all the size fields before the variable sized
> fields, because otherwise the later size fields may not be where you
> expect them to be. But because we're bailing out if any of the sizes
> don't match it doesn't actually matter.

Yeah, but I will reorganize fadump header and put the size fields before the
variable sized fields.

>>       struct cpumask    cpu_mask;
>> };
> The other issue is endian. I assume we're just declaring that the
> 1st/2nd kernel must be the same endian? We should still make that
> explicit though.

A comment is fine or should we add a explicit check and error out
with relevant error message if endianness is not same across the

Something like:

if (fdh->magic_number != FADUMP_CRASH_INFO_MAGIC) {
     if (fdh->magic_number == swab64(FADUMP_CRASH_INFO_MAGIC)) {
         pr_err("Endianness mismatch");
     } else {
         pr_err("Fadump header is corrupted.");
     return false;

> To make it clearer that this struct is somewhat an ABI, I think we
> should move the definition into arch/powerpc/include/uapi/asm/fadump.h
> We don't expect userspace to actually use the header, but it will
> hopefully remind everyone that the struct needs to be changed with care :)

Sourabh Jain

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