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SubjectRe: [PATCH 11/19] btrfs: introduce submit buffer

On 2019/06/13 23:15, Josef Bacik wrote:
> On Fri, Jun 07, 2019 at 10:10:17PM +0900, Naohiro Aota wrote:
>> Sequential allocation is not enough to maintain sequential delivery of
>> write IOs to the device. Various features (async compress, async checksum,
>> ...) of btrfs affect ordering of the IOs. This patch introduces submit
>> buffer to sort WRITE bios belonging to a block group and sort them out
>> sequentially in increasing block address to achieve sequential write
>> sequences with __btrfs_map_bio().
>> Signed-off-by: Naohiro Aota <>
> I hate everything about this. Can't we just use the plugging infrastructure for
> this and then make sure it re-orders the bios before submitting them? Also
> what's to prevent the block layer scheduler from re-arranging these io's?
> Thanks,

The block I/O scheduler reorders requests in LBA order, but that happens for a
newly inserted request against pending requests. If there are no pending
requests because all requests were already issued, no ordering happen, and even
worse, if the drive queue is not full yet (e.g. there are free tags), then the
newly inserted request will be dispatched almost immediately, preventing
reordering with subsequent incoming write requests to happen.

The other problem is that the mq-deadline scheduler does not track zone WP
position. Write request issuing is done regardless of the current WP value,
solely based on LBA ordering. This means that mq-deadline will not prevent
out-of-order, or rather, unaligned write requests. These will not be detected
and dispatched whenever possible. The reasons for this are that:
1) the disk user (the FS) has to manage zone WP positions anyway. So duplicating
that management at the block IO scheduler level is inefficient.
2) Adding zone WP management at the block IO scheduler level would also need a
write error processing path to resync the WP value in case of failed writes. But
the user/FS also needs that anyway. Again duplicated functionalities.
3) The block layer will need a timeout to force issue or cancel pending
unaligned write requests. This is necessary in case the drive user stops issuing
writes (for whatever reasons) or the scheduler is being switched. This would
unnecessarily cause write I/O errors or cause deadlocks if the request queue
quiesce mode is entered at the wrong time (and I do not see a good way to deal
with that).

blk-mq is already complicated enough. Adding this to the block IO scheduler will
unnecessarily complicate things further for no real benefits. I would like to
point out the dm-zoned device mapper and f2fs which are both already dealing
with write ordering and write error processing directly. Both are fairly
straightforward but completely different and each optimized for their own structure.

Naohiro changes to btrfs IO scheduler have the same intent, that is, efficiently
integrate and handle write ordering "a la btrfs". Would creating a different
"hmzoned" btrfs IO scheduler help address your concerns ?

Best regards.

Damien Le Moal
Western Digital Research

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