[PATCH v2 0/5] Export offsets of VMCS fields as note information for kdump

Avi Kivity avi at redhat.com
Thu Jun 14 09:15:43 EDT 2012

On 06/11/2012 08:35 AM, Yanfei Zhang wrote:
> Hello Avi,

Sorry about the delay...

> 于 2012年05月29日 15:06, Yanfei Zhang 写道:
>> 于 2012年05月28日 21:28, Avi Kivity 写道:
>>> On 05/28/2012 08:25 AM, Yanfei Zhang wrote:
>>>> Dou you have any comments about this patch set?
>>> I still have a hard time understanding why it is needed.  If the host
>>> crashes, there is no reason to look at guest state; the host should
>>> survive no matter what the guest does.
>> OK. Let me summarize it.
>> 1. Why is this patch needed? (Our requirement)
>> We once came to a buggy situation: a host scheduler bug caused guest machine's
>> vcpu stopped for a long time and then led to heartbeat stop (host is still running).
>> we want to have an efficient way to make the bug analysis when we come to the similar
>> situation where guest machine doesn't work well due to something of host machine's, 
>> Because we should debug both host machine's and guest machine's sides to look for
>> the reasons, so we want to get both host machine's crash dump and guest machine's
>> crash dump at the same time when the buggy situation remains.

I would argue that there are two separate bugs here: (1) a host bug
which caused the scheduling delay (2) putting a heartbeat service on a
virtualized guests with no real time guarantees.

But I understand your situation.

>> 2. What will we do?
>> If this bug was found on customer's environment, we have two ways to avoid
>> affecting other guest machines running on the same host. First, we could do bug
>> analysis on another environment to reproduce the buggy situation; Second, we
>> could migrate other guest machines to other hosts. 

You could also use tracing (there's the latency tracer and the scheduler
tracepoints) to debug this on a live system.

>> After the buggy situation is reproduced, we panic the host *manually*.
>> Then we could use userland tools to get guest machine's crash dump from host machine's
>> with the feature provided by this patch set. Finally we could analyse them separately
>> to find which side causes the problem.
> Could you please tell me your attitude towards this patch? 

I still dislike it conceptually.  But let me do a technical review of
the latest version.

> And here is a new case from the LinuxCon Japan:
> Developers from Hitach are now developing a new livedump mechanism for the
> same reason as ours. They have come to the situation *many times* that guest
> machines crashed due to host's failures, in particular, under development.

This has happened to me as well, possible even more times :).  I don't
use crash dumps for debugging but different people may use different

> So they develop this mechanism to get crash dump while retaining the buggy
> situation between host and guest machine. The difference between theirs and
> ours is whether or not to use the feature on _customer's running machine_.

error compiling committee.c: too many arguments to function

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