Re: [PATCH 4/6] watchdog: Boot-disable by default on full dynticks

From: anish singh
Date: Thu Jun 13 2013 - 12:21:16 EST

On Thu, Jun 13, 2013 at 9:18 PM, Steven Rostedt <rostedt@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> On Thu, 2013-06-13 at 11:20 -0400, Don Zickus wrote:
>> I don't know enough about how full dynticks work to even present a
>> solution. But currently I was working with the Red Hat performance team
>> to enhance perf to help our customers diagnose performance problems
>> easier.
>> My fear is anyone who uses full dynticks and has issues, can't use perf to
>> help diagnose their problems because it will change the dynamics of the
>> problem. And with the current huge drop in performance in cpu_idle (as
>> compared to RHEL-6's 2.6.32 kernel) due to what seems to be miscalculated
>> c-states, one might have a hard time evaluating if full dynticks is doing
>> the right thing or not.
> This needs to be fixed, but not for 3.11. Although, you can still use
> ftrace to diagnose it.
>> Then again perhaps full dynticks isn't useful for distros like RHEL.
> It will be very useful for RHEL. But its still very new, and I wouldn't
> recommend using it in a production environment yet. There's still a few
> issues that need to be worked out, including this one. When the issues
> are fixed, then RHEL and other distributions will definitely want to
> enable this.
>> That's why I was hoping to solve the underlying problem as opposed to
>> accepting patches like this which work around the symptoms.
> For now it's just to get things working as people expect it to. First
> impressions are very important, and if someone enables it and sees it
> makes no difference, they may from then on never trust it. The way to
> handle that is to make sure it works when enabled, even if it disables
> some other cool features. But as I said, it shouldn't be used in
> production quite yet.
>> Again, my knowledge of full dynticks is poor, so I have almost no idea of
>> the complexities surrounding the problem and how hard it is to even solve
>> it.
> The concept behind full dynamic ticks is very easy. When you set a given
> CPU(s) to dynamic tick, when it only has a single task scheduled on that
> CPU, it disables the periodic tick. This removes essentially *all*

Documentation/timers/highres.txt states that
hrtimer_stop_sched_tick() is called when a CPU goes into idle state.Would
you mind elaborating "single task scheduled on that CPU"?
I am bit new to this so please excuse me if the question is too basic.
> latency from the kernel! That is, if the task is doing some complex
> calculations, it wont be interrupted for kernel maintenance. A lot of
> Red Hat customers would love to have this feature. It allows for
> extremely low latency actions even without a real-time kernel. Heck, it
> works without even kernel preemption.
> Now removing the periodic tick is not a trivial task, and this is where

You mean getting rid of period ticks in the kernel code is not easy as there
are many features such as perf is dependent on it right and that is why
instead of completely removing periodic ticks we just set the periodic tick
to happen at 1HZ instead of CONFIG_HZ value?
> all our issues come from. In fact, we can not even completely remove the
> tick yet, we just move it to 1 HZ instead of whatever the CONFIG_HZ is
> set to. We have to handle everything that depends on that tick, which
> includes perf, among other things.
> -- Steve
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