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SubjectRe: [PATCH 8/8] membarrier: Rewrite sync_core_before_usermode() and improve documentation
----- On Jun 15, 2021, at 11:21 PM, Andy Lutomirski wrote:


> +# An architecture that wants to support
> +# MEMBARRIER_CMD_PRIVATE_EXPEDITED_SYNC_CORE needs to define precisely what it
> +# is supposed to do and implement membarrier_sync_core_before_usermode() to
> +# make it do that. Then it can select ARCH_HAS_MEMBARRIER_SYNC_CORE via
> +# Kconfig.Unfortunately, MEMBARRIER_CMD_PRIVATE_EXPEDITED_SYNC_CORE is not a
> +# fantastic API and may not make sense on all architectures. Once an
> +# architecture meets these requirements,

Can we please remove the editorial comment about the quality of the membarrier
sync-core's API ?

At least it's better than having all userspace rely on mprotect() undocumented
side-effects to perform something which typically works, until it won't, or until
this prevents mprotect's implementation to be improved because it will start breaking
JITs all over the place.

We can simply state that the definition of what membarrier sync-core does is defined
per-architecture, and document the sequence of operations to perform when doing
cross-modifying code specifically for each architecture.

Now if there are weird architectures where membarrier is an odd fit (I've heard that
riscv might need address ranges to which the core sync needs to apply), then those
might need to implement their own arch-specific system call, which is all fine.

> +#
> +# On x86, a program can safely modify code, issue
> +# MEMBARRIER_CMD_PRIVATE_EXPEDITED_SYNC_CORE, and then execute that code, via
> +# the modified address or an alias, from any thread in the calling process.
> +#
> +# On arm64, a program can modify code, flush the icache as needed, and issue
> +# MEMBARRIER_CMD_PRIVATE_EXPEDITED_SYNC_CORE to force a "context synchronizing
> +# event", aka pipeline flush on all CPUs that might run the calling process.
> +# Then the program can execute the modified code as long as it is executed
> +# from an address consistent with the icache flush and the CPU's cache type.
> +#
> +# On powerpc, a program can use MEMBARRIER_CMD_PRIVATE_EXPEDITED_SYNC_CORE
> +# similarly to arm64. It would be nice if the powerpc maintainers could
> +# add a more clear explanantion.

We should document the requirements on ARMv7 as well.



Mathieu Desnoyers
EfficiOS Inc.

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