Re: [PATCH] mmu_notifier, kvm: Introduce dirty bit tracking in spteand mmu notifier to help KSM dirty bit tracking

From: Nai Xia
Date: Wed Jun 22 2011 - 21:30:39 EST

On Thu, Jun 23, 2011 at 7:25 AM, Andrea Arcangeli <aarcange@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 23, 2011 at 07:13:54AM +0800, Nai Xia wrote:
>> I agree on this point. Dirty bit , young bit, is by no means accurate. Even
>> on 4kB pages, there is always a chance that the pte are dirty but the contents
>> are actually the same. Yeah, the whole optimization contains trade-offs and
> Just a side note: the fact the dirty bit would be set even when the
> data is the same is actually a pros, not a cons. If the content is the
> same but the page was written to, it'd trigger a copy on write short
> after merging the page rendering the whole exercise wasteful. The
> cksum plays a double role, it both "stabilizes" the unstable tree, so
> there's less chance of bad lookups, but it also avoids us to merge
> stuff that is written to frequently triggering copy on writes, and the
> dirty bit would also catch overwrites with the same data, something
> the cksum can't do.

Good point. I actually have myself another version of ksm(off topic, but
if you want to take a glance: :-) )
that did do statistics of the ratio of the pages in a VMA that really got COWed.
due to KSM merging on each scan round basis.

It's complicated to deduce a precise information only
from the dirty and cksum.

To unsubscribe from this list: send the line "unsubscribe linux-kernel" in
the body of a message to majordomo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
More majordomo info at
Please read the FAQ at