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Date:	Thu, 23 Oct 2014 16:28:16 -0400
From:	Dave Jones <>
To:	"Paul E. McKenney" <>
Cc:	Linux Kernel <>,,
Subject: Re: rcu_preempt detected stalls.

On Thu, Oct 23, 2014 at 12:52:21PM -0700, Paul E. McKenney wrote:
 > On Thu, Oct 23, 2014 at 03:37:59PM -0400, Dave Jones wrote:
 > > On Thu, Oct 23, 2014 at 12:28:07PM -0700, Paul E. McKenney wrote:
 > > 
 > >  > >  > This one will require more looking.  But did you do something like
 > >  > >  > create a pair of mutually recursive symlinks or something?  ;-)
 > >  > > 
 > >  > > I'm not 100% sure, but this may have been on a box that I was running
 > >  > > tests on NFS. So maybe the server had disappeared with the mount
 > >  > > still active..
 > >  > > 
 > >  > > Just a guess tbh.
 > >  > 
 > >  > Another possibility might be that the box was so overloaded that tasks
 > >  > were getting preempted for 21 seconds as a matter of course, and sometimes
 > >  > within RCU read-side critical sections.  Or did the box have ample idle
 > >  > time?
 > > 
 > > I fairly recently upped the number of child processes I typically run
 > > with, so it being overloaded does sound highly likely.
 > Ah, that could do it!  One way to test extreme loads and not trigger
 > RCU CPU stall warnings might be to make all of your child processes all
 > sleep during a given interval of a few hundred milliseconds during each
 > ten-second interval.  Would that work for you?

This feels like hiding from the problem rather than fixing it.
I'm not sure it even makes sense to add sleeps to the fuzzer, other than
to slow things down, and if I were to do that, I may as well just run
it with fewer threads instead.

While the fuzzer is doing pretty crazy stuff, what's different about it
from any other application that overcommits the CPU with too many threads?

We impose rlimits to stop people from forkbombing and the like, but this
doesn't even need that many processes to trigger, and with some effort
could probably done with even fewer if I found ways to keep other cores
busy in the kernel for long enough.

That all said, I don't have easy reproducers for this right now, due
to other bugs manifesting long before this gets to be a problem.


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