/proc/vmcore kernel patches

HATAYAMA Daisuke d.hatayama at jp.fujitsu.com
Tue Apr 23 20:17:00 EDT 2013

(2013/04/23 20:45), Cliff Wickman wrote:
> On Tue, Apr 23, 2013 at 09:38:57AM +0900, HATAYAMA Daisuke wrote:
>> (2013/04/23 2:55), Cliff Wickman wrote:
>>> Hello Mr. Atayama and Mr. Kumagai,
>>> I have been playing with the v4 patches
>>>        kdump, vmcore: support mmap() on /proc/vmcore
>>> and find the mmap interface to /proc/vmcore potentially about 80x faster than
>>> the read interface.
>>> But in practice (using a makedumpfile that mmap's instead of read's) I find
>>> it about 10x slower.
>>> It looks like makedumpfile's usage of the interface is very inefficient.
>>> It will mmap an area, read a page, then back up the offset to a previous
>>> page.  It has to munmap and mmap on virtually every read.
>> You can change size of mapping memory through command-line option
>> --map-size <some KB>.
>> The version of makedumpfile is experimental. The design should be
>> changed if it turns out to be problematic.
> Yes I'm using --map-size <some KB> but the bigger I make the mapping
> size the worse makedumpfile performs. The typical pattern is to map and
> read page x, then map and read page x - 1.  So every read has to unmap
> and remap.  The bigger the mapping, the slower it goes.
>>> Do you have a re-worked makedumpfile that predicts a large range of
>>> pages and mmap's the whole range just once?
>>> It seems that makedumpfile should have the information available to do
>>> that.
>> The benchmark result has already shown that under large enough map size,
>> the current implementation performs as well as other kernel-space
>> implementation that maps a whole range of memory.
> I must be missing some part of that benchmark.  I see that the interface
> is much faster, but my benchmarks of makedumpfile itself are much slower
> when using mmap.
> Can you point me to the makedumpfile source that you are using?

I used mmap branch at


with the following patch applied:

diff --git a/makedumpfile.c b/makedumpfile.c
index 7acbf72..9dc6aee 100644
--- a/makedumpfile.c
+++ b/makedumpfile.c
@@ -290,8 +290,10 @@ read_with_mmap(off_t offset, void *bufptr, unsigned 
long size) {


-       if (!is_mapped_with_mmap(offset))
-               update_mmap_range(offset);
+       if (!is_mapped_with_mmap(offset)) {
+               if (!update_mmap_range(offset))
+                       return FALSE;
+       }

         read_size = MIN(info->mmap_end_offset - offset, size);

>> In addition, the current implementation of remap_pfn_range uses 4KB
>> pages only. This means that total size of PTEs amounts to 2GB per 1TB.
>> It's better to map pages little by little for small memory programming.
> Agreed, we need a way to map with 2M pages.  And I am not suggesting that
> you map all of the old kernel memory at once.  Just one region of page
> structures at a time.

Ideally so, but the benchmark showed good performance even in the 
current impelementation, so I'm now thinking that modifying 
remap_pfn_range is not definitely necessary.


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