Re: [PATCH 0/9] OpenVZ kernel based checkpointing/restart

From: Oren Laadan
Date: Mon Oct 20 2008 - 11:56:30 EST

Daniel Lezcano wrote:
> Louis Rilling wrote:
>> On Fri, Oct 17, 2008 at 04:33:03PM -0700, Dave Hansen wrote:
>>> On Wed, 2008-09-03 at 14:57 +0400, Andrey Mirkin wrote:
>>>> This patchset introduces kernel based checkpointing/restart as it is
>>>> implemented in OpenVZ project. This patchset has limited functionality and
>>>> are able to checkpoint/restart only single process. Recently Oren Laaden
>>>> sent another kernel based implementation of checkpoint/restart. The main
>>>> differences between this patchset and Oren's patchset are:
>>> Hi Andrey,
>>> I'm curious what you want to happen with this patch set. Is there
>>> something specific in Oren's set that deficient which you need
>>> implemented? Are there some technical reasons you prefer this code?
>> To be fair, and since (IIRC) the initial intent was to start with OpenVZ's
>> approach, shouldn't Oren answer the same questions with respect to Andrey's
>> patchset?
>> I'm afraid that we are forgetting to take the best from both approaches...
> I agree with Louis.
> I played with Oren's patchset and tryed to port it on x86_64. I was able
> to sys_checkpoint/sys_restart but if you remove the restoring of the
> general registers, the restart still works. I am not an expert on asm,
> but my hypothesis is when we call sys_checkpoint the registers are saved
> on the stack by the syscall and when we restore the memory of the
> process, we restore the stack and the stacked registers are restored
> when exiting the sys_restart. That make me feel there is an important
> gap between external checkpoint and internal checkpoint.

This is a misconception: my patches are not "internal checkpoint". My
patches are basically "external checkpoint" by design, which *also*
accommodates self-checkpointing (aka internal). The same holds for the
restart. The implementation is demonstrated with "self-checkpoint" to
avoid complicating things at this early stage of proof-of-concept.

For multiple processes all that is needed is a container and a loop
on the checkpoint side, and a method to recreate processes on the
restart side. Andrew suggests to do it in kernel space, I still have

While I held out the multi-process part of the patch so far because I
was explicitly asked to do it, it seems like this would be a good time
to push it out and get feedback.

> Dmitry's patchset is nice too, but IMO, it goes too far from what we
> decided to do at the container mini-summit. I think there are a lot of
> design questions to be solved before going further.
> IMHO we should look at Dmitry patchset and merge the external checkpoint
> code to Oren's patchset in order to checkpoint *one* process and have
> the process to restart itself. At this point, we can begin to talk about
> the restart itself, shall we have the kernel to fork the processes to be
> restarted ? shall we fork from userspace and implement some mechanism to
> have each processes to restart themselves ? etc...

In both approaches, processes restart themselves, in the sense that a
process to be restarted eventually calls "do_restart()" (or equivalent).

The only question is how processes are created. Andrew's patch creates
everything inside the kernel. I would like to still give it a try outside
the kernel. Everything is ready, except that we need a way to pre-select
a PID for the new child... we never agreed on that one, did we ?

If we go ahead with the kernel-based process creation, it's easy to merge
it to the current patch-set.


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