[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Xen-devel] Xen RTC emulation


In what we believe is now the final regression discovered when upgrading
XenServer from Xen 4.1 to 4.3, there is an issue with RTC emulation.

Win2003 SP2 is a WAET unaware operating system, whose RTC access pattern
triggers Xen's rtc_mode_no_ack logic.  The result is that the domain
falls into a tight loop reading RTC RegC, whoes value is always 0xc0.

I have confirmed that switching Xen back to RTC strict mode fixes the
regression, but I am presuming that this alone would be an unpopular fix

At the moment, HVMloader unconditionally advertises the RTC_NO_ACK bit
in the WAET table, and Xen unconditionally decides that the domain has
been informed that it should not ack RTC interrupts as per the

This logic is broken.  There is no guarantee that the domain has read
the WAET table, but even if it has, there is no guarantee that it will
act on the information it has been given.  One option would be the
toolstack to set this parameter up; it is in the best place to know
whether a certain domain will correctly use the new available mode. 
This would involve moving the rtc mode in Xen to a per-domain setting.

On the other hand, there are obvious advantages from Xen's point of view
with rtc_mode_no_ack, which couldn't be taken with the above toolstack

So, I would like peoples opinions on what is the best course of action? 
Playing with this code has proved incredibly fragile in the past and I
am not sure whether it is better to fix up Xen's detection logic and
hope nothing else breaks, or defer the decision to the toolstack and
take the performance hit of running extra timers in Xen.


Xen-devel mailing list



Lists.xenproject.org is hosted with RackSpace, monitoring our
servers 24x7x365 and backed by RackSpace's Fanatical Support®.