Re: 2.6.18-mm2

From: Andi Kleen
Date: Fri Sep 29 2006 - 16:59:13 EST

On Friday 29 September 2006 22:32, Ingo Molnar wrote:
> * Andi Kleen <ak@xxxxxxx> wrote:
> > On Friday 29 September 2006 22:14, Ingo Molnar wrote:
> > >
> > > * Andi Kleen <ak@xxxxxxx> wrote:
> > >
> > > > BTW I was planning to make LOCAL_APIC unconditional on i386 too like
> > > > on x86-64.
> > >
> > > please dont - embedded doesnt need it most of the time.
> >
> > What do you mean with not need? Local APIC is an infinitely better
> > interface than PIC and faster. On embedded too this makes a lot of
> > sense.
> it's just not present or hardware-disabled.

The kernel won't use it then. Also on next years embedded systems
this will likely change.

> > And a lot of modern systems don't even work anymore without APIC
> > enabled because Windows uses it and the BIOS haven't been tested
> > without it (e.g. you often find totally broken code paths in the AML
> > for PIC mode)
> >
> > The code size also isn't a good argument because the delta
> > isn't that big:
> >
> > text data bss dec hex filename
> > 3303894 694980 436420 4435294 43ad5e obj32-up/vmlinux
> > 3266532 665732 402372 4334636 42242c obj32-up-noapic/vmlinux
> >
> > ~63K.
> 63K???? You've got to be kidding. That's huge. That's ~10% of the
> minconfig kernel.

A large part of it is the ACPI support. Without that it's smaller:

text data bss dec hex filename
2978333 640752 416100 4035185 3d9271 obj32-up-noacpi/vmlinux
2947808 612088 400292 3960188 3c6d7c obj32-up-noacpi-noapic/vmlinux


You might be able to do without ACPI on your embedded system.

> Even 1K would be bad. We did config hacks for half a K
> win.


Sorry, but that's silly. I did some measurements and just tweaking a
few dynamic allocation pigs saves you much more memory without
uglifying the code. In fact in most configurations you can find dynamic
users who need more than the complete kernel text - this means
even if you got the kernel text down to 0 bytes you wouldn't save as
much as simple tweaks in the dynamic pig.

I know it's easy to do size vmlinux and complain about bloat there,
but that is really not where the real bloat is. Finding the
real ones takes more effort of course.

And maintainability is much more important. Too many CONFIGs
just waste developer time and this one is particularly nasty
because it tends to break all the time.

And if you really want to make vmlinux smaller anyways you usually
get much better payoff by concentrating on inline functions than
uglifying the code with more CONFIGs. A few people did excellent
work on that recently and the kernel actually shrunk for most people, not
just some extreme config. But CONFIGs just
cause everybody more work for usually very little payoff.



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