[PATCH v12 11/31] documentation: iommu: add binding document of Exynos System MMU

Marc Zyngier marc.zyngier at arm.com
Thu May 1 09:24:31 PDT 2014

On 01/05/14 16:53, Arnd Bergmann wrote:
> On Thursday 01 May 2014 16:11:48 Marc Zyngier wrote:
>> On 01/05/14 15:36, Dave Martin wrote:
>>> On Thu, May 01, 2014 at 02:29:50PM +0100, Arnd Bergmann wrote:
>>>> On Thursday 01 May 2014 12:15:35 Dave Martin wrote:
>>>>> On Tue, Apr 29, 2014 at 10:46:18PM +0200, Arnd Bergmann wrote:
>>>>>> I don't understand. An MSI controller is just an address that acts
>>>>>> as a DMA slave for a 4-byte inbound data packet. It has no way of
>>>>>> knowing who is sending data, other than by the address or the data
>>>>>> sent to it. Are you talking of something else?
>>>>> Oops, looks like there are a few points I failed to respond to here...
>>>>> I'm not an expert on PCI -- I'm prepared to believe it works that way.
>>>>> GICv3 can descriminate between different MSI senders based on ID
>>>>> signals on the bus.
>>>> Any idea what this is good for? Do we have to use it? It probably doesn't
>>>> fit very well into the way Linux handles MSIs today.
>>> Marc may be better placed than me to comment on this in detail.
>> As to "fitting Linux", it seems to match what Linux does fairly well
>> (see the kvm-arm64/gicv3 branch in my tree). Not saying that it does it
>> in a very simple way (far from it, actually), but it works.
> ok.
>> As to "what it is good for" (and before someone bursts into an Edwin
>> Starr interpretation), it mostly has to do with isolation, and the fact
>> that you may want to let the whole MSI programming to a guest (and yet
>> ensure that the guest cannot generate interrupts that would be assigned
>> to other devices). This is done by sampling the requester-id at the ITS
>> level, and use this information to index a per-device interrupt
>> translation table (I could talk for hours about the concept and its
>> variations, mostly using expletives and possibly a hammer, but I think
>> it is the time for my pink pill).
> So the idea is that you want to give the guest unfiltered access to the
> PCI config space of an assigned device?
> Is that safe?
> If the config space access goes through the hypervisor (as I think we
> always do today), there should be no isse.

My natural tendency would be to filter everything, as we certainly don't
want the device to be reconfigured in weird and fancy ways (my PCI-foo
is a bit limited, so bear with me). But as usual, GICv3 is not PCI
specific, and is designed to cater for weird and wonderful cases, PCI
being only one possible implementation...

On a non-PCI system, you definitely could assign a MSI-like capable
device, and let the guest do its thing. I'm already seeing that kind of

>>> However, I believe it's correct to say that because the GIC is not part
>>> of PCI, end-to-end MSI delivery inherently involves a non-PCI step from
>>> the PCI RC to the GIC itself.
>>> Thus this is likely to be a fundamental requirement for MSIs on ARM SoCs
>>> using GIC, if we want to have a hope of mapping MSIs to VMs efficiently.
>> Indeed. GICv[34] is the ARM way of implementing MSI on SBSA compliant
>> systems (from level 1 onwards, if memory serves well). People are
>> actively building systems with this architecture, and relying on it to
>> provide VM isolation.
> I don't mind it being there, but if we don't need it, we shouldn't
> have to use that isolation feature and be able to just allow any
> initiator to send an MSI.

It is not that simple. You could design things around a global ITT,
pointed to by all the possible devices in your system. But that table
would be quite big (it has to contain the routing information for all
the possible messages in your system, and must be physically
contiguous). You still need to know the devices (requester-id,
device-id, whatever), as there is no wildcard mechanism.

Also, this approach pretty much kills hotplug (you cannot easily resize
that table to add new interrupt entries). That's why I've opted for a
more dynamic configuration, where each device gets its own ITT as it
appears on the system.

Jazz is not dead. It just smells funny...

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