[PATCH v6 0/6] arm64: Add kernel probes (kprobes) support
wcohen at redhat.com
Tue May 5 20:14:26 PDT 2015
On 05/05/2015 05:02 PM, William Cohen wrote:
> On 05/05/2015 11:48 AM, Will Deacon wrote:
>> On Tue, May 05, 2015 at 06:14:51AM +0100, David Long wrote:
>>> On 05/01/15 21:44, William Cohen wrote:
>>>> Dave Long and I did some additional experimentation to better
>>>> understand what is condition causes the kernel to sometimes spew:
>>>> Unexpected kernel single-step exception at EL1
>>>> The functioncallcount.stp test instruments the entry and return of
>>>> every function in the mm files, including kfree. In most cases the
>>>> arm64 trampoline_probe_handler just determines which return probe
>>>> instance matches the current conditions, runs the associated handler,
>>>> and recycles the return probe instance for another use by placing it
>>>> on a hlist. However, it is possible that a return probe instance has
>>>> been set up on function entry and the return probe is unregistered
>>>> before the return probe instance fires. In this case kfree is called
>>>> by the trampoline handler to remove the return probe instances related
>>>> to the unregistered kretprobe. This case where the the kprobed kfree
>>>> is called within the arm64 trampoline_probe_handler function trigger
>>>> the problem.
>>>> The kprobe breakpoint for the kfree call from within the
>>>> trampoline_probe_handler is encountered and started, but things go
>>>> wrong when attempting the single step on the instruction.
>>>> It took a while to trigger this problem with the sytemtap testsuite.
>>>> Dave Long came up with steps that reproduce this more quickly with a
>>>> probed function that is always called within the trampoline handler.
>>>> Trying the same on x86_64 doesn't trigger the problem. It appears
>>>> that the x86_64 code can handle a single step from within the
>>> I'm assuming there are no plans for supporting software breakpoint debug
>>> exceptions during processing of single-step exceptions, any time soon on
>>> arm64. Given that the only solution that I can come with for this is
>>> instead of making this orphaned kretprobe instance list exist only
>>> temporarily (in the scope of the kretprobe trampoline handler), make it
>>> always exist and kfree any items found on it as part of a periodic
>>> cleanup running outside of the handler context. I think these changes
>>> would still all be in archiecture-specific code. This doesn't feel to
>>> me like a bad solution. Does anyone think there is a simpler way out of
>> Just to clarify, is the problem here the software breakpoint exception,
>> or trying to step the faulting instruction whilst we were already handling
>> a step?
>> I think I'd be inclined to keep the code run in debug context to a minimum.
>> We already can't block there, and the more code we add the more black spots
>> we end up with in the kernel itself. The alternative would be to make your
>> kprobes code re-entrant, but that sounds like a nightmare.
>> You say this works on x86. How do they handle it? Is the nested probe
>> on kfree ignored or handled?
> Hi Dave and Will,
> The attached patch attempts to eliminate the need for the breakpoint in the trampoline. It is modeled after the x86_64 code and just saves the register state, calls the trampoline handler, and then fixes the return address. The code compiles, but I have NOT verified that it works. It looks feasible to do things this way. In addition to avoiding the possible issue with a kretprobe on kfree it would also make the kretprobes faster because it would avoid the breakpoint exception and the associated kprobe handling in the trampoline.
Hi Dave and Will,
Attached is a revised version of the patch to avoid using a kprobe breakpoint in the trampoline. It shows signs of working, but is still a work in progress.
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