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Date:	Tue, 4 Feb 2014 20:10:37 +0400
From:	Glauber Costa <>
To:	Vladimir Davydov <>
Cc:	Michal Hocko <>,
	Andrew Morton <>,
	David Rientjes <>,
	Pekka Enberg <>,
	Christoph Lameter <>,,
	LKML <>,
Subject: Re: [PATCH 3/8] memcg, slab: never try to merge memcg caches

On Tue, Feb 4, 2014 at 8:04 PM, Vladimir Davydov <> wrote:
> On 02/04/2014 07:43 PM, Glauber Costa wrote:
>> On Tue, Feb 4, 2014 at 7:27 PM, Vladimir Davydov <> wrote:
>>> On 02/04/2014 07:11 PM, Michal Hocko wrote:
>>>> On Tue 04-02-14 18:59:23, Vladimir Davydov wrote:
>>>>> On 02/04/2014 06:52 PM, Michal Hocko wrote:
>>>>>> On Sun 02-02-14 20:33:48, Vladimir Davydov wrote:
>>>>>>> Suppose we are creating memcg cache A that could be merged with cache B
>>>>>>> of the same memcg. Since any memcg cache has the same parameters as its
>>>>>>> parent cache, parent caches PA and PB of memcg caches A and B must be
>>>>>>> mergeable too. That means PA was merged with PB on creation or vice
>>>>>>> versa, i.e. PA = PB. From that it follows that A = B, and we couldn't
>>>>>>> even try to create cache B, because it already exists - a contradiction.
>>>>>> I cannot tell I understand the above but I am totally not sure about the
>>>>>> statement bellow.
>>>>>>> So let's remove unused code responsible for merging memcg caches.
>>>>>> How come the code was unused? find_mergeable called cache_match_memcg...
>>>>> Oh, sorry for misleading comment. I mean the code handling merging of
>>>>> per-memcg caches is useless, AFAIU: if we find an alias for a per-memcg
>>>>> cache on kmem_cache_create_memcg(), the parent of the found alias must
>>>>> be the same as the parent_cache passed to kmem_cache_create_memcg(), but
>>>>> if it were so, we would never proceed to the memcg cache creation,
>>>>> because the cache we want to create already exists.
>>>> I am still not sure I understand this correctly. So the outcome of this
>>>> patch is that compatible caches of different memcgs can be merged
>>>> together? Sorry if this is a stupid question but I am not that familiar
>>>> with this area much I am just seeing that cache_match_memcg goes away
>>>> and my understanding of the function is that it should prevent from
>>>> different memcg's caches merging.
>>> Let me try to explain how I understand it.
>>> What is cache merging/aliasing? When we create a cache
>>> (kmem_cache_create()), we first try to find a compatible cache that
>>> already exists and can handle requests from the new cache. If it is, we
>>> do not create any new caches, instead we simply increment the old cache
>>> refcount and return it.
>>> What about memcgs? Currently, it operates in the same way, i.e. on memcg
>>> cache creation we also try to find a compatible cache of the same memcg
>>> first. But if there were such a cache, they parents would have been
>>> merged (i.e. it would be the same cache). That means we would not even
>>> get to this memcg cache creation, because it already exists. That's why
>>> the code handling memcg caches merging seems pointless to me.
>> IIRC, this may not always hold. Some of the properties are configurable via
>> sysfs, and it might be that you haven't merged two parent caches because they
>> properties differ, but would be fine merging the child caches.
>> If all properties we check are compile-time parameters, then it should be okay.
> AFAIK, we decide if a cache should be merged only basing on its internal
> parameters, such as size, ctor, flags, align (see find_mergeable()), but
> they are the same for root and memcg caches.
> The only way to disable slub merging is via the "slub_nomerge" kernel
> parameter, so it is impossible to get a situation when parents can not
> be merged, while children can.
> The only point of concern may be so called boot caches
> (create_boot_cache()), which are forcefully not allowed to be merged by
> setting refcount = -1. There are actually only two of them kmem_cache
> and kmem_cache_node used for internal slub allocations. I guess it was
> done preliminary, and we should not merge them for memcgs neither.
> To sum it up, if a particular root cache is allowed to be merged, it was
> allowed to be merged since its creation and all its children caches are
> also allowed to be merged. If merging was not allowed for a root cache
> when it was created, we should not merge its children caches.
> Thanks.

Fair Enough.

E Mare, Libertas
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