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SubjectRe: posix-cpu-timers revamp
On Fri, 2008-03-21 at 00:18 -0700, Roland McGrath wrote:
> I think I misled you about the use of the it_*_expires fields, sorry.
> The task_struct.it_*_expires fields are used solely as a cache of the
> head of cpu_timers[]. Despite the poor choice of the same name, the
> signal_struct.it_*_expires fields serve a different purpose. For an
> analogous cache of the soonest timer to expire, you need to add new
> fields. The signal_struct.it_{prof,virt}_{expires,incr} fields hold
> the setitimer settings for ITIMER_{PROF,VTALRM}. You can't change
> those in arm_timer. For a quick cache you need a new field that is
> the sooner of it_foo_expires or the head cpu_timers[foo] expiry time.

Actually, after looking at the code again and thinking about it a bit,
it appears that the signal_struct.it_*_incr field holds the actual
interval as set by setitimer. Initially the it_*_expires field holds
the expiration time as set by setitimer, but after the timer fires the
first time that value becomes <firing time>+it_*_incr. In other words,
the first time it fires at the value set by setitimer() but from then on
it fires at a time indicated by whatever the time was the last time the
timer fired plus the value in it_*_incr. This time is stored in

I guess I could be wrong about this, but it appears to be what the code
is doing. If my analysis is correct, I really don't need a new field,
since the old fields work just fine.
Frank Mayhar <>
Google, Inc.

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