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Re: [PATCH V2 1/3] MIPS: Fix cache flushing for swap pages with non-DMA

To: David Daney <>, "Maciej W. Rozycki" <>
Subject: Re: [PATCH V2 1/3] MIPS: Fix cache flushing for swap pages with non-DMA I/O.
From: Leonid Yegoshin <>
Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2015 15:19:16 -0800
Cc: Zenon Fortuna <>, "Steven J. Hill" <>, IMG - MIPS Linux Kernel developers <>, Linux MIPS Mailing List <>
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On 02/24/2015 02:57 PM, David Daney wrote:
On 02/24/2015 02:50 PM, Maciej W. Rozycki wrote:
On Tue, 24 Feb 2015, Leonid Yegoshin wrote:

For simplicity perhaps on SMP we should just always use hit operations
regardless of the size requested.

High performance folks may not like doing a lot of stuff for 8MB VMA release
instead of flushing 64KB.

  What kind of a use case is that, what does it do?

Especially taking into account TLB exceptions and postprocessing in
fixup_exception() for swapped-out/not-yet-loaded-ELF blocks.

The normal use for cacheflush(2) I know of is for self-modifying or other
run-time-generated code, to synchronise caches after a block of machine
code has been patched in -- SYNCI can also be used for that purpose these

SYNCI is only useful in non-SMP kernels.
Yes, until MIPS R6. I pressed hard on Arch team to change vague words in SYNCI description and now (MIPS R6) it has words requiring execution on all cores:

"SYNCI globalization:
Release 6: SYNCI globalization (as described below) is required: compliant implementations must globalize SYNCI. Portable software can rely on this behavior, and use SYNCI rather than expensive “instruction cache shootdown”
using inter-processor interrupts."

- Leonid.

If a thread is migrated to a different CPU between the SYNCI, and the attempt to execute the freshly generated code, the new CPU can still have a dirty ICACHE. So for Linux userspace, cacheflush(2) is your only option.

David Daney

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