[PATCH v5 0/4] introduction of migration_version attribute for VFIO live migration

Yan Zhao yan.y.zhao at intel.com
Wed Jun 10 00:37:31 UTC 2020

On Fri, Jun 05, 2020 at 03:39:50PM +0100, Dr. David Alan Gilbert wrote:
> > > > I tried to simplify the problem a bit, but we keep going backwards.  If
> > > > the requirement is that potentially any source device can migrate to any
> > > > target device and we cannot provide any means other than writing an
> > > > opaque source string into a version attribute on the target and
> > > > evaluating the result to determine compatibility, then we're requiring
> > > > userspace to do an exhaustive search to find a potential match.  That
> > > > sucks.   
> > >
hi Alex and Dave,
do you think it's good for us to put aside physical devices and mdev aggregation
for the moment, and use Alex's original idea that

+  Userspace should regard two mdev devices compatible when ALL of below
+  conditions are met:
+  (0) The mdev devices are of the same type
+  (1) success when reading from migration_version attribute of one mdev device.
+  (2) success when writing migration_version string of one mdev device to
+  migration_version attribute of the other mdev device.

and what about adding another sysfs attribute for vendors to put
recommended migration compatible device type. e.g.
#cat /sys/bus/pci/devices/0000:00:02.0/mdev_supported_types/i915-GVTg_V5_8/migration_compatible_devices
parent id: 8086 591d
mdev_type: i915-GVTg_V5_8

vendors are free to define the format and conent of this migration_compatible_devices
and it's even not to be a full list.

before libvirt or user to do live migration, they have to read and test
migration_version attributes of src/target devices to check migration compatibility.


> > > Why is the mechanism a 'write and test' why isn't it a 'write and ask'?
> > > i.e. the destination tells the driver what type it's received from the
> > > source, and the driver replies with a set of compatible configurations
> > > (in some preferred order).
> > 
> > A 'write and ask' interface would imply some sort of session in order
> > to not be racy with concurrent users.  More likely this would imply an
> > ioctl interface, which I don't think we have in sysfs.  Where do we
> > host this ioctl?
> Or one fd?
>   f=open()
>   write(f, "The ID I want")
>   do {
>      read(f, ...)  -> The IDs we're offering that are compatible
>   } while (!eof)
> > > It's also not clear to me why the name has to be that opaque;
> > > I agree it's only got to be understood by the driver but that doesn't
> > > seem to be a reason for the driver to make it purposely obfuscated.
> > > I wouldn't expect a user to be able to parse it necessarily; but would
> > > expect something that would be useful for an error message.
> > 
> > If the name is not opaque, then we're going to rat hole on the format
> > and the fields and evolving that format for every feature a vendor
> > decides they want the user to be able to parse out of the version
> > string.  Then we require a full specification of the string in order
> > that it be parsed according to a standard such that we don't break
> > users inferring features in subtly different ways.
> > 
> > This is a lot like the problems with mdev description attributes,
> > libvirt complains they can't use description because there's no
> > standard formatting, but even with two vendors describing the same class
> > of device we don't have an agreed set of things to expose in the
> > description attribute.  Thanks,
> I'm not suggesting anything in anyway machine parsable; just something
> human readable that you can present in a menu/choice/configuration/error
> message.  The text would be down to the vendor, and I'd suggest it start
> with the vendor name just as a disambiguator and to make it obvious when
> we get it grossly wrong.
> Dave
> > Alex
> --
> Dr. David Alan Gilbert / dgilbert at redhat.com / Manchester, UK
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