[RFC 1/3 v3] mm: iommu: An API to unify IOMMU, CPU and device memory management

Zach Pfeffer zpfeffer at codeaurora.org
Thu Jul 15 01:40:51 EDT 2010

On Wed, Jul 14, 2010 at 06:47:34PM -0700, Eric W. Biederman wrote:
> Zach Pfeffer <zpfeffer at codeaurora.org> writes:
> > On Wed, Jul 14, 2010 at 11:05:36PM +0100, Russell King - ARM Linux wrote:
> >> On Wed, Jul 14, 2010 at 01:11:49PM -0700, Zach Pfeffer wrote:
> >> > If the DMA-API contained functions to allocate virtual space separate
> >> > from physical space and reworked how chained buffers functioned it
> >> > would probably work - but then things start to look like the VCM API
> >> > which does graph based map management.
> >> 
> >> Every additional virtual mapping of a physical buffer results in
> >> additional cache aliases on aliasing caches, and more workload for
> >> developers to sort out the cache aliasing issues.
> >> 
> >> What does VCM to do mitigate that?
> >
> > The VCM ensures that all mappings that map a given physical buffer:
> > IOMMU mappings, CPU mappings and one-to-one device mappings all map
> > that buffer using the same (or compatible) attributes. At this point
> > the only attribute that users can pass is CACHED. In the absence of
> > CACHED all accesses go straight through to the physical memory.
> >
> > The architecture of the VCM allows these sorts of consistency checks
> > to be made since all mappers of a given physical resource are
> > tracked. This is feasible because the physical resources we're
> > tracking are typically large.
> On x86 this is implemented in the pat code, and could reasonably be
> generalized to be cross platform.
> This is controlled by HAVE_PFNMAP_TRACKING and with entry points
> like track_pfn_vma_new.
> Given that we already have an implementation that tracks the cached
> vs non-cached attribute using the dma api.  I don't see that the
> API has to change.  An implementation of the cached vs non-cached
> status for arm and other architectures is probably appropriate.
> It is definitely true that getting your mapping caching attributes
> out of sync can be a problem.

Sure, but we're still stuck with needing lots of scatterlist list
elements and needing to copy them to share physical buffers.

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