[PATCH v10 03/19] arm: fiq: Replace default FIQ handler

Daniel Thompson daniel.thompson at linaro.org
Wed Sep 3 03:21:30 PDT 2014

On 02/09/14 17:42, Russell King - ARM Linux wrote:
> On Tue, Sep 02, 2014 at 12:49:16PM +0100, Daniel Thompson wrote:
>> On 28/08/14 16:01, Russell King - ARM Linux wrote:
>>> I just asked Paul McKenney, our RCU expert... essentially, yes, RCU
>>> stuff itself is safe in this context.  However, RCU stuff can call into
>>> lockdep if lockdep is configured, and there are questions over lockdep.
>>> There's some things which can be done to reduce the lockdep exposure
>>> to it, such as ensuring that rcu_read_lock() is first called outside
>>> of FIQ context.
>>> There's concerns with whether either printk() in check_flags() could
>>> be reached too (flags there should always indicate that IRQs were
>>> disabled, so that reduces down to a question about just the first
>>> printk() there.)
>>> There's also the very_verbose() stuff for RCU lockdep classes which
>>> Paul says must not be enabled.
>>> Lastly, Paul isn't a lockdep expert, but he sees nothing that prevents
>>> lockdep doing the deadlock checking as a result of the above call.
>>> So... this coupled with my feeling that notifiers make it too easy for
>>> unreviewed code to be hooked into this path, I'm fairly sure that we
>>> don't want to be calling atomic notifier chains from FIQ context.
>> Having esablished (elsewhere in the thread) that RCU usage is safe
>> from FIQ I have been working on the assumption that your feeling
>> regarding unreviewed code is sufficient on its own to avoid using
>> notifiers (and also to avoid a list of function pointers like on x86).
> Yes, it does, because unlike the x86 community, we have a wide range
> of platforms, and platform code does not go through the same path or
> get the same review as core ARM code.
> As I already pointed out, with a notifier, it's very easy to sneak
> something into the FIQ path by submitting a patch for platform code
> which calls the registration function.  That's going to be pretty
> difficult to spot amongst the 3000+ messages on the linux-arm-kernel
> list each month in order to give it the review that it would need.
> That's especially true as I now ignore almost all most platform
> code patches as we have Arnd and Olof to look at that.
> So, unless you can come up with a proposal which ensures that there
> is sufficient review triggered when someone decides to call the
> notifier registration function...

Reflecting upon this and upon Thomas' comments about only using FIQ for
watchdog, backtrace and performance monitoring...

The short version is, "I was wrong and should have done what you said in
the first place".

The long version adds, "because the coupling concerns were spurious; the
only proposed users of the default FIQ handler outside of core ARM code,
are ARM-centric irqchip drivers."

> How about something like:
> static const char *allowable_callers[] = {
> 	...
> };
> 	snprintf(caller, sizeof(caller), "%pf", __builtin_return_address(0));
> 	for (i = 0; i < ARRAY_SIZE(allowable_callers); i++)
> 		if (!strcmp(caller, allowable_callers[i]))
> 			break;
> 	if (i == ARRAY_SIZE(allowable_callers)) {
> 		printk(KERN_ERR "%s is not permitted to register a FIQ notifer\n",
> 			caller);
> 		return;
> 	}
> This gives us the advantage of using the notifier, but also gives us the
> requirement that the file has to be modified to permit new registrations,
> thereby triggering the closer review.

Cool trick. However since I'm wrong...

> The other question I have is that if we permit kgdb and nmi tracing with
> this mechanism, how do the hooked callers distinguish between these
> different purposes?  I don't see how that works with your notifier
> setup.

The notifier as found in the existing patchs allowed the sharing only of
IPI FIQ (for example between stack dump code and kgdb).

This worked due to the way IPIs can be automatically EOIed and, because
they are software generated, software can use flags. In fact the kgdb
handler already uses this to discriminate between IPI FIQ and UART
interrupts (although the flag is set kgdb core logic rather than in the
ARM code).

For SPIs it's safety depended upon drivers using claim_fiq() to
arbitrate. There was no enforcement mechanism to prevent abuse.

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