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Date:   Fri, 27 Apr 2018 13:53:16 +0200
From:   Bartosz Golaszewski <>
To:     Arnd Bergmann <>
Cc:     Bartosz Golaszewski <>,
        David Lechner <>,
        Rich Felker <>, Sekhar Nori <>,
        Kevin Hilman <>,
        Michael Turquette <>,
        Stephen Boyd <>,
        Greg Kroah-Hartman <>,
        Rob Herring <>,
        Mark Rutland <>,
        Yoshinori Sato <>,
        Frank Rowand <>,
        "Rafael J . Wysocki" <>,
        Jarkko Sakkinen <>,
        Dmitry Torokhov <>,
        Arend van Spriel <>,
        Heikki Krogerus <>,
        Michal Suchanek <>,
        Jan Kiszka <>,
        Andy Shevchenko <>,
        Marc Zyngier <>,
        Peter Rosin <>,
        Linux ARM <>,
        Linux Kernel Mailing List <>,
        DTML <>
Subject: Re: [PATCH RFC PoC 0/2] platform: different approach to early
 platform drivers

2018-04-27 12:18 GMT+02:00 Arnd Bergmann <>:
> On Fri, Apr 27, 2018 at 10:57 AM, Bartosz Golaszewski
> <> wrote:
>> 2018-04-27 9:52 GMT+02:00 Arnd Bergmann <>:
>>> On Fri, Apr 27, 2018 at 4:28 AM, David Lechner <> wrote:
>>>> On 04/26/2018 12:31 PM, Rich Felker wrote:
>> We have platforms out there which still use both board files and
>> device tree. They are still comercially supported and are not going
>> anywhere anytime soon. Some of these platforms are being actively
>> maintained and cleaned-up. An example is the DaVinci platform: David
>> has recently converted all the SoCs and boards to using the common
>> clock framework. I'm cleaning up some other parts too.
>> The problem with the legacy board code is that a lot of things that
>> should be platform drivers ended up in arch/arm/mach-*. We're now
>> slowly moving this code to drivers/ but some initialization code
>> (timers, critical clocks, irqs) needs to be called early in the boot
>> sequence.
> Right, and that's very good work.
>> When you're saying that we already have all the OF_DECLARE macros, it
>> seems to me that you're forgetting that we also want to keep
>> supporting the board files. So without the early platform drivers we
>> need to use a mix of OF_DECLARE and handcrafted initialization in
>> arch/arm/mach-* since we can't call platform_device_register() that
>> early. This blocks us from completely moving the should-be-driver code
>> to drivers/, because these drivers *need* to support both cases.
> The OF_DECLARE_* functions were initially added as a way to
> remove board files that just consist of callbacks into early
> initialization for some subsystems. As long as you still have
> board files and you are looking for a way to reuse code between
> OF_DECLARE_* functions and board files, why not just leave
> those functions globally visible and call them from the non-DT
> board files?
>> The main problem with OF_DECLARE is that although we have
>> corresponding device nodes, we never actually register any real linux
>> devices. If we add to this the fact that current early platform
>> drivers implementation is broken (for reasons I mentioned in the cover
>> letter) the support gets really messy, since we can have up to three
>> entry points to the driver's code. Other issues come to mind as well:
>> if we're using OF_DECLARE we can't benefit from devm* routines.
> Right, the devm_* problem has come up before.
>> My aim is to provide a clean, robust and generic way of probing
>> certain devices early and then converting them to actual platform
>> devices when we're advanced enough into the boot sequence. If we
>> merged such a framework, we could work towards removing both the
>> previous early platform devices (in favor of the new mechanism) and
>> maybe even deprecating and replacing OF_DECLARE(), since we could
>> simply early probe the DT drivers. Personally I see OF_DECLARE as a
>> bigger hack than early devices.
>> My patch tries to address exactly the use cases we're facing - for
>> example by providing means to probe devices twice (early and late) and
>> to check the state we're at in order for users to be able to just do
>> the critical initialization early on and then continue with regular
>> stuff later.
> Maybe the problem is reusing the name and some of the code from
> an existing functionality that we've been trying to get rid of.

I'm not reusing the name - in fact I set the prefix to earlydev_
exactly in order to not confuse anyone. I'm also not reusing any code
in the second series.

> If what you want to do is completely different from the existing
> early_platform implementation, how about starting by moving that
> out of drivers/base/platform.c into something under arch/sh/
> and renaming it to something with an sh_ prefix.

Yes, this is a good idea, but what about the sh-specific drivers that
rely on it? Is including headers from arch/ in driver code still an
accepted practice?

> Let's just leave the non-DT part out of it by making it sh specific.
> Then we can come up with improvements to the current
> platform_device handling for DT based platforms that you can
> use on DT-based davinci to replace what currently happens on
> board-file based davinci systems, without mixing up those
> two code paths too much in the base driver support.

I don't see why we wouldn't want to unify these two cases. The best
solution to me seems having only one entry point into the driver code
- the probe() function stored in platform_driver - whether we're
probing it from DT, platform data, ACPI or early boot code.

Best regards,
Bartosz Golaszewski

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