[linux-lvm] Re: IO scheduler, queue depth, nr_requests

Nick Piggin piggin at cyberone.com.au
Thu Feb 19 09:00:00 UTC 2004

Miquel van Smoorenburg wrote:

>On Thu, 19 Feb 2004 02:24:31, Nick Piggin wrote:
>>Miquel van Smoorenburg wrote:
>>>I found out what causes this. It's get_request_wait().
>>>When the request queue is full, and a new request needs to be created,
>>>__make_request() blocks in get_request_wait().
>>>Another process wakes up first (pdflush / process submitting I/O itself /
>>>xfsdatad / etc) and sends the next bio's to __make_request().
>>>In the mean time some free requests have become available, and the bios
>>>are merged into a new request. Those requests are submitted to the device.
>>>Then, get_request_wait() returns but the bio is not mergeable anymore -
>>>and that results in a backwards seek, severely limiting the I/O rate.
>>The "batching" logic there should allow a process to submit
>>a number of requests even above the nr_requests limit to
>>prevent this interleave and context switching.
>>Are you using tagged command queueing? What depth?
>No, I'm not using tagged command queueing. The 3ware controller is not a
>real scsi controller, the driver just emulates one. It's a raid5 controller
>that drives SATA disks. It has an internal request queue ("can_queu")
>of 254 outstanding commands.

This is what I mean by tagged command queueing.

> Because that is way bigger than nr_requests
>this happens - if I set nr_requests to 512, the problem goes away. But
>that shouldn't happen ;)

What shouldn't happen?

>I'm preparing a proof-of-concept patch now, if it works and I don't wedge
>the remote machine I'm testing this on I'll post it in a few minutes.

I'm not very happy with forcing a process to sleep _after_ it
has submitted a request... but I'd be interested to see exactly
what your patch does.

By far the best option is to use appropriately sized queues.
The below patch is a start, but it unfortunately doesn't help
drivers which use private queueing implementations.


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