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Re: [Xen-devel] [PATCH 13/25] argo: implement the register op

On Wed, Dec 5, 2018 at 9:20 AM Julien Grall <julien.grall@xxxxxxx> wrote:
> On 04/12/2018 09:08, Christopher Clark wrote:
> > On Sun, Dec 2, 2018 at 12:11 PM Julien Grall <Julien.Grall@xxxxxxx> wrote:
> >> On 01/12/2018 01:32, Christopher Clark wrote:
> >>> diff --git a/xen/include/public/argo.h b/xen/include/public/argo.h
> >>> ...
> >>> +/* pfn type: 64-bit on all architectures to aid avoiding a compat ABI */
> >>> +typedef uint64_t argo_pfn_t;
> >>
> >> As you always use 64-bit, can we just use an address? This would make
> >> the ABI agnostic to the hypervisor page granularity.
> By address I meant guest physical address (and not guest virtual address).
> Arm processors may support multiple page granularity (4KB, 16KB, 64KB). The
> software is allowed to use different granularity at different level. This 
> means
> that the hypervisor could use 4KB page while the guest kernel would use 64KB
> page (and vice versa). Some distros made the choice to only support one type 
> of
> page granularity (i.e 64KB for REHL, 4KB for Debian...).
> At the moment the hypercall interface is based on the hypervisor page
> granularity. Because Xen has always supported 4KB page-granularity, this
> assumption was also hardcoded in the kernel.
> What prevent us to get 64KB page support in Xen (and therefore support for
> 52-bit address) is the hypercall ABI. If you upgrade Xen to 64KB then the
> hypercall interface would defact use 64KB frame. This would break any current
> guest. It is also not possible to keep 4KB pages everywhere because you can 
> only
> map 64KB in Xen. So you may map a bit too much from another guest.
> This makes me think that the frame is probably not the best in that situation.
> Instead a pair of address/size would be more suitable.
> The problem is much larger than this series. But I thought I would attempt to
> convince the community using guest physical address over guest frame address
> whenever it is possible.

Thanks, Julien -- that explanation is very helpful and your request makes sense.

So in concrete terms, with the change that you're advocating for to
this patch, the 64-bit value that is supplied by the guest in the
array passed as an argument to register_ring would encode the same
guest physical frame number as it currently does in the patch version
presented in this thread, but it would be bit-shifted to the position
used in a physical address.

In addition to that change, a page size indicator would be supplied
too -- for every page address supplied in the call.

Is there a method currently used within Xen (or relevant places
elsewhere) for encoding both the page address and size (ie. 4KB, 16KB
or 64KB) within the same 64-bits?
ie. Knowing that the smallest granularity of page is 4KB, and that all
pages are aligned to at least a 4KB boundary, there are low bits in
the address that are known to be zero, and those could be used to
indicate the page size when supplied to this call. It seems like such
an encoding would allow for avoiding doubling the size of the argument
array, but I'm not sure how inconvenient it would be to work with in

If so, such an interface change looks manageable and hopefully it
would be acceptable to only support 4KB pages in the current
implementation behind that new ABI for the time being. Let me know
what you think.



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