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Re: deadlock with latest xfs

To: Lachlan McIlroy <lachlan@xxxxxxx>, Christoph Hellwig <hch@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>, xfs-oss <xfs@xxxxxxxxxxx>, linux-mm@xxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: deadlock with latest xfs
From: Lachlan McIlroy <lachlan@xxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 27 Oct 2008 17:29:50 +1100
In-reply-to: <20081027053004.GF11948@disturbed>
References: <4900412A.2050802@xxxxxxx> <20081023205727.GA28490@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> <49013C47.4090601@xxxxxxx> <20081024052418.GO25906@disturbed> <20081024064804.GQ25906@disturbed> <20081026005351.GK18495@disturbed> <20081026025013.GL18495@disturbed> <49051C71.9040404@xxxxxxx> <20081027053004.GF11948@disturbed>
Reply-to: lachlan@xxxxxxx
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Dave Chinner wrote:
On Mon, Oct 27, 2008 at 12:42:09PM +1100, Lachlan McIlroy wrote:
Dave Chinner wrote:
On Sun, Oct 26, 2008 at 11:53:51AM +1100, Dave Chinner wrote:
On Fri, Oct 24, 2008 at 05:48:04PM +1100, Dave Chinner wrote:
OK, I just hung a single-threaded rm -rf after this completed:

# fsstress -p 1024 -n 100 -d /mnt/xfs2/fsstress

It has hung with this trace:
Got it now. I can reproduce this in a couple of minutes now that both
the test fs and the fs hosting the UML fs images are using lazy-count=1
(and the frequent 10s long host system freezes have gone away, too).

Looks like *another* new memory allocation problem [1]:
We've entered memory reclaim inside the xfsdatad while trying to do
unwritten extent completion during I/O completion, and that memory
reclaim is now blocked waiting for I/o completion that cannot make


My initial though is to make _xfs_trans_alloc() able to take a KM_NOFS argument
so we don't re-enter the FS here. If we get an ENOMEM in this case, we should
then re-queue the I/O completion at the back of the workqueue and let other
I/o completions progress before retrying this one. That way the I/O that
is simply cleaning memory will make progress, hence allowing memory
allocation to occur successfully when we retry this I/O completion...
It could work - unless it's a synchronous I/O in which case the I/O is not
complete until the extent conversion takes place.

Right. Pushing unwritten extent conversion onto a different
workqueue is probably the only way to handle this easily.
That's the same solution Irix has been using for a long time
(the xfsc thread)....

Would that be a workqueue specific to one filesystem?  Right now our
workqueues are per-cpu so they can contain I/O completions for multiple

Could we allocate the memory up front before the I/O is issued?

Possibly, but that will create more memory pressure than
allocation in I/O completion because now we could need to hold
thousands of allocations across an I/O - think of the case where
we are running low on memory and have a disk subsystem capable of
a few hundred thousand I/Os per second. the allocation failing would
prevent the I/os from being issued, and if this is buffered writes
into unwritten extents we'd be preventing dirty pages from being

The allocation has to be done sometime - if have a few hundred thousand
I/Os per second then the queue of unwritten extent conversion requests
is going to grow very quickly.  If a separate workqueue will fix this
then that's a better solution anyway.

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