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SubjectRe: WARNING in up_write
On Fri, Apr 6, 2018 at 4:01 AM, Dave Chinner <> wrote:
> On Thu, Apr 05, 2018 at 05:13:25PM -0700, Eric Biggers wrote:
>> On Fri, Apr 06, 2018 at 08:32:26AM +1000, Dave Chinner wrote:
>> > On Wed, Apr 04, 2018 at 08:24:54PM -0700, Matthew Wilcox wrote:
>> > > On Wed, Apr 04, 2018 at 11:22:00PM -0400, Theodore Y. Ts'o wrote:
>> > > > On Wed, Apr 04, 2018 at 12:35:04PM -0700, Matthew Wilcox wrote:
>> > > > > On Wed, Apr 04, 2018 at 09:24:05PM +0200, Dmitry Vyukov wrote:
>> > > > > > On Tue, Apr 3, 2018 at 4:01 AM, syzbot
>> > > > > > <> wrote:
>> > > > > > > DEBUG_LOCKS_WARN_ON(sem->owner != get_current())
>> > > > > > > WARNING: CPU: 1 PID: 4441 at kernel/locking/rwsem.c:133 up_write+0x1cc/0x210
>> > > > > > > kernel/locking/rwsem.c:133
>> > > > > > > Kernel panic - not syncing: panic_on_warn set ...
>> > > > >
>> > > > > Message-Id: <>
>> > > > >
>> > > >
>> > > > We were way ahead of syzbot in this case. :-)
>> > >
>> > > Not really ... syzbot caught it Monday evening ;-)
>> >
>> > Rather than arguing over who reported it first, I think that time
>> > would be better spent reflecting on why the syzbot report was
>> > completely ignored until *after* Ted diagnosed the issue
>> > independently and Waiman had already fixed it....
>> >
>> > Clearly there is scope for improvement here.
>> >
>> > Cheers,
>> >
>> Well, ultimately a human needed to investigate the syzbot bug report to figure
>> out what was really going on. In my view, the largest problem is that there are
>> simply too many bugs, so many are getting ignored.
> Well, yeah. And when there's too many bugs, looking at the ones
> people are actually hitting tend to take precedence over those
> reported by a bot an image problem...
>> If there were only a few bugs, then Dmitry would investigate each
>> one and send a "real" bug report of better quality than the
>> automated system can provide, or even send a fix directly. But in
>> reality, on the same day this bug was reported, syzbot also found
>> 10 other bugs, and in the previous 2 days it had found 38 more.
>> No single person can keep up with that.
> And this is precisely why people turn around and ask the syzbot
> developers to do things that make it easier for them to diagnose
> the problems syzbot reports.
>> You can see the current
>> bug list, which has 172 open bugs, on the dashboard at
> Is that all? That's *nothing*.
>> Yes, the kernel really is that
>> broken.
> Actually, that tells me the kernel is a hell of a lot better than my
> experience leads me to beleive it is. I'd have expected thousands of
> bugs, even tens of thousands of bugs given how many issues we deal
> with in individual subsystems on a day to day basis.
>> And although quite a few of these bugs will end up to be
>> duplicates or even already fixed, a human still has to look at
>> each one to figure that out. (Though, I do think that syzbot
>> should try to automatically detect when a reproducible bug was
>> already fixed, via bisection. It would cause a few bugs to be
>> incorrectly considered fixed, but it may be a worthwhile
>> tradeoff.)
>> These bugs are all over the kernel as well, so most developers
>> don't see the big picture but rather just see a few bugs for
>> "their" subsystem on "their" subsystem's mailing list and
>> sometimes demand special attention. Of course, it's great when
>> people suggest ways to improve the process.
> That's not the response I got....
>> But it's not great
>> when people just don't feel responsible for fixing bugs and wait
>> for Someone Else to do it.
> The excessive cross posting of the reports is one of the reasons
> people think someone else will take care of it. i.e. "Oh, that looks VFS,
> that went to -fsdevel, I don't need to look at it"....
> Put simply: if you're mounting an XFS filesystem image and something
> goes bang, then it should be reported to the XFS list. It does not
> need to be cross posted to LKML, -fsdevel, 10 individual developers,
> etc. If it's not an XFS problem, then the XFS developers will CC the
> relevant lists as needed.
>> I'm hoping that in the future the syzbot "team", which seems to
>> actually be just Dmitry now, can get more resources towards
>> helping fix the bugs. But either way, in the end Linux is a
>> community effort.
> We don't really need help fixing the bugs - we need help making it
> easier to *find the bug* the bot tripped over. That's what the
> syzbot team needs to focus on, not tell people that what they got is
> all they are going to get.
>> Note also that syzbot wasn't super useful in this particular case
>> because people running xfstests came across the same bug. But,
>> this is actually a rare case. Most syzbot bug reports have been
>> for weird corner cases or races that no one ever thought of
>> before, so there are no existing tests that find them.
> Which is exactly what these whacky "mount a filesystem fragment"
> tests it is now doing are exercising. Finding the cause of
> corruption related crashes is not easy and takes time. Having the
> bot developers add something to the bot that will save the developer
> looking at the problem 10 minutes of setup time makes a huge
> difference to the effort required to find the problem.
> The tool is useless if people find it too hard to make sense of the
> bug reports (*cough* lockdep *cough*) or perform triage of the
> report. If we want to get the bugs fixed faster, we have to make the
> reports from automated tools contain the exact information the
> developer needs to solve the problem.


Regarding feature requests.
We too have limited resources unfortunately and can't handle all
feature requests. Feature requests generally fall into the following

1. General features that are easy to do.
These are generally done right away (more or less).

2. General features that require significant time.
These are noted and are done as resources permit. For example:
- bisection (
- kdump collection (
Examples of what is done already:
- patch testing
- significantly restructured reports

3. Subsystem-specific features that are easy to do.
I don't remember that we got any. I guess they would compete with case 2.

4. Subsystem-specific features that require significant time.
For these we don't have resources at the moment. Our company have
dedicated people for some subsystems (to not go far -- Ted for ext4),
but we don't have people for just any subsystem.
Kernel developers working on Infiniband contributed to syzkaller
themselves, and as far as I understand they are very happy with the
results because it allowed them to find and fix several dozens of
critical bugs (without involing us at all), so that's an option too.

Then, the context of the system is not a single subsystem and not a
single bug. Please don't draw all conclusions from a small subset of
cases. At this scale there inevitably will be harder bugs that will be
handled worse than a dedicated human would do (but a dedicated human
would not be able to handle that amount of bugs). But this does not
make the overall effect negative, lots of hundreds of bugs are getting
fixed. In lots of cases developers pick up bugs from "C program +
repro instructions". There is also considerable amount of simpler bugs
that are getting fixed even without reproducers. In can be a case for
a filesystem too, for example, a NULL deref with an obvious missed
preceeding state check, or a KASAN report with all stacks. It's not
possible to know ahead of time if it's something that can be fixed
with the existing information, or something that can't be. So there is
no option of reporting just the former bugs, we can report either all
of them or none of them (which would mean that none of the bugs are

Regarding prioritization.
Bisection is on our plate. But note that a WARNING can be misleading.
One of the bad bugs syzkaller has found was exactly a WARNING, a
WARNING to restore FPU registers on context switch, which means
interprocess, or host->guest information leak. One of the worst ones
manifested in no kernel report at all. It was one of these "target
machine just become unresponsive with no self-detected reports".
"There is something wrong with kernel" reports get lowest priority,
but that one turned out to be full guest->host escape. Even if it's
just a WARNING, but triggered remotely, that can be a large problem
too. So generally prioritizaton still requires an expert atention,
which in turn requires reports all these bugs in the first place.
It can also be a case that an innocent bug masks critical bugs. For
example, if there is an easy to trigger bug on enterance to a
subsystem, nothing else will be discovered until that one is fixed.

There are definitely more than 172 bugs. I agree, thousands. And the
system is generally capable of finding them, it already has found
close to 2000 I think. It's just that the system chokes with existing
bugs and all test machines crash right after boot. The more bugs we
fix, the more new bugs we will see.

Bugs with high CVSS scores are frequently found with similar fuzzing
systems. But these won't be reported by humans on mailing lists, and
these are not bugs people are actually hitting. These look exactly
like this -- some insane inputs to kernel and are sold and used to
exploit our phones and bank accounts.

Regarding CC lists.
If you see issues there, please improve scripts/
That's what most people use to find relevant emails when reporting
bugs (when they are not maintainers of this very subsystem and have
some secret knowledge) and that's what syzbot uses. If it produces
wrong results, the scope of the problem is larger than syzbot.

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