vmalloc_reserve with no highmem

Florian Fainelli f.fainelli at gmail.com
Tue Oct 20 12:32:04 PDT 2015

On 20/10/15 12:25, Russell King - ARM Linux wrote:
> On Tue, Oct 20, 2015 at 12:17:59PM -0700, Florian Fainelli wrote:
>> On 20/10/15 11:52, Laura Abbott wrote:
>>> On 10/19/2015 04:20 PM, Florian Fainelli wrote:
>>>> Hi Russell, Laura,
>>>> Setting vmalloc= on the kernel command-line to define the amount of
>>>> vmalloc_reserve is not quite working when you have no highmem, as is the
>>>> case of one my boards which has 512MB or 256M populated on a first bank
>>>> at PA 0x0.
>>>> What happens in that case is that, despite setting vmalloc_reserve,
>>>> therefore bumping up vmalloc_min to a higher address than high_memory,
>>>> which is assigned __va(arm_lowmem_limit), we end-up with VMALLOC_START
>>>> at high_memory + VMALLOC_OFFSET, which yields the amount of physical
>>>> memory (start at PA 0x0 in my case) - VMALLOC_OFFSET.
>>>> The maths look like this for this particular board (512MB)
>>>> high_memory = 0x20000000 + PAGE_OFFSET = 0x20000000 + 0xC0000000 =
>>>> 0xE0000000
>>>> vmalloc_min = 0xFF00000 - (248 * 1024 * 1024) = 0xEF800000
>>>> so we end-up with VMALLOC_START = high_memory + VMALLOC_OFFSET =
>>>> 0xE0000000 + 8 * 1024* 1024 = 0xE0800000
> Correct, high_memory will be 0xe0000000, which will set VMALLOC_START
> to 0xe0800000, and you'll have lots of vmalloc space available.  That's
> intentional.
> vmalloc= sets the _minimum_ vmalloc space that's available, not the
> absolute amount of space.

I think we need to update Documentation/kernel-parameters.txt then:

        vmalloc=nn[KMG] [KNL,BOOT] Forces the vmalloc area to have an exact
                        size of <nn>. This can be used to increase the
                        minimum size (128MB on x86). It can also be used to
                        decrease the size and leave more room for directly
                        mapped kernel RAM.

this makes me understand I should get the absolute value I specified.

>>> #define VMALLOC_OFFSET          (8*1024*1024)
>>> #define VMALLOC_START           (((unsigned long)high_memory +
>>> #define VMALLOC_END             0xff000000UL
>>> VMALLOC_START is based off of the value of high_memory. high_memory
>>> is supposed to be the limit of the kernel direct mapped ram region so
>>> setting it to something above that is asking for trouble.
>> You're right, that does not seem right.
> That's correct.  high_memory is the last address of mapped lowmem.
> We then have an 8MB space.  The quote above is correct.
> I don't see what the problem is.

Might just be documentation vs. actual results displayed by the "Kernel
virtual memory layout". A similar "issue" exists if you specify vmalloc=
on the command-line and you get a result which is offset by VMALLOC_OFFSET.

I will do a better homework and go back to thinking about this.

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