alignment faults in 3.6

Måns Rullgård mans at
Fri Oct 12 07:00:03 EDT 2012

Russell King - ARM Linux <linux at> writes:

> On Fri, Oct 12, 2012 at 08:11:42AM +0000, Arnd Bergmann wrote:
>> On Thursday 11 October 2012, Måns Rullgård wrote:
>> > > But, the IP header is expected to be aligned.
>> > 
>> > Everything tells the compiler the struct is perfectly aligned.  When the
>> > buggy driver passes a misaligned pointer, bad things happen.
>> Would it be appropriate to add a WARN_ON_ONCE() in the alignment fault path
>> then?

I think that's an excellent idea.

>> If all alignment faults in the kernel are caused by broken drivers,
>> that would at least give us some hope of finding those drivers while
>> at the same time not causing much overhead in the case where we need
>> to do the fixup in the meantime.
> No.  It is my understanding that various IP option processing can also
> cause the alignment fault handler to be invoked, even when the packet is
> properly aligned, and then there's jffs2/mtd which also relies upon
> alignment faults being fixed up.

As far as I'm concerned, this is all hearsay, and I've only ever heard
it from you.  Why can't you let those who care fix these bugs instead?

Måns Rullgård
mans at

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