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[Xen-users] opensolaris/illumos on PVHVM under 4.x.y?

  • To: xen-users@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • From: Eric Shelton <eshelton@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 14 Mar 2013 18:30:37 -0400
  • Delivery-date: Thu, 14 Mar 2013 22:32:34 +0000
  • List-id: Xen user discussion <xen-users.lists.xen.org>

[sorry for the dupe, the previous message was sent out prematurely...]

I was hoping to implement a storage domain using blkback to serve up
ZFS zvols, to see how it works out.  Is anyone successfully running
opensolaris with PV drivers under HVM on Xen 4.x.y? I am running on an
AMD IOMMU capable computer.  The closest I have gotten is:
(1) coaxing openindiana into booting up as a PV guest (not a smooth
out-of-the-box type of install)
(2) with acpi=0, an HVM boot will go pretty far, but there is a bug
present in 151a7, in which the hvm_sd and sd modules fail to load due
to being improperly built and take down the boot.  A patch for this
issue was entered into the illumos-gate repository, but does not
appear to have been used for any current distribution.
(3) with acpi=0 and use of the kernel bugger (::bp get_hwenv, :c,
platform_type/W 0, ::delete 1, :c), I can get openindiana to boot up a
plain PC kernel.  I think I recall network and/or PV driver issues
being a problem.
(4) I tried out some illumos-gate kernel build/installs, but the
typical response from a new build is some kind of a hang or lockup
that is unresponsive to the F1-A kernel debugger.  However, I am
definitely stumbling my way through this, so I may not have run the
kernel build or install correctly.

OmniOS dies pretty quickly, whether under PV or HVM.

I am beginning to get the impression that there was an active PV and
functional driver under Xen 3, but that the illumos PV drivers did not
keep up with various changes required to interoperate with Xen 4 (or
at least the more recent Xen releases).  Even if I were to consider
KVM, although virtio-blk looks like it may be OK, a proposed
virtio-net driver has not been accepted into illumos-gate, and is of
unknown quality (it appears to be a slightly tweaked version of a
prototype driver that was admitted to be incomplete by its original
author).  There appear to be suggestions that PVHVM has been
maintained and works in Solaris 11, but I would much more strongly
prefer using one of the illumos-based distributions.

If there is anyone running opensolaris outside of PV (in other words,
under HVM) under Xen 4.x.y, what is your Xen guest config, and which
distribution are you using?

Also, in sorting out how I might boot a plain non-HVM kernel (see use
of the kernel debugger under (3) above), it looks like the
"xen_platform_pci" parameter in xl.cfg-type files does nothing as the
code presently stands - defeinitely when using qemu-upstream, and I
think also under qemu-traditional.  The xenpci device continues to
show up on the virtual PCI bus under "xen_platform_pci=0".  However,
even if the xenpci device was toggled on/off, it turns out illumos
would still boot an HVM kernel, as it uses the availability of the
0x40000000 cpuid info to identify when it is running under Xen (hence
the debugger procedure set out in (3) above).  If xen_platform_pci is
set to 0, is this Xen cpuid functionality supposed to be diabled?

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