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Date:   Thu, 2 Nov 2023 21:27:44 -0700
From:   Wei Xu <weixugc@...gle.com>
To:     Pasha Tatashin <pasha.tatashin@...een.com>
Cc:     David Hildenbrand <david@...hat.com>,
        Sourav Panda <souravpanda@...gle.com>, corbet@....net,
        gregkh@...uxfoundation.org, rafael@...nel.org,
        akpm@...ux-foundation.org, mike.kravetz@...cle.com,
        muchun.song@...ux.dev, rppt@...nel.org, rdunlap@...radead.org,
        chenlinxuan@...ontech.com, yang.yang29@....com.cn,
        tomas.mudrunka@...il.com, bhelgaas@...gle.com, ivan@...udflare.com,
        yosryahmed@...gle.com, hannes@...xchg.org, shakeelb@...gle.com,
        kirill.shutemov@...ux.intel.com, wangkefeng.wang@...wei.com,
        adobriyan@...il.com, vbabka@...e.cz, Liam.Howlett@...cle.com,
        surenb@...gle.com, linux-kernel@...r.kernel.org,
        linux-fsdevel@...r.kernel.org, linux-doc@...r.kernel.org,
        linux-mm@...ck.org, willy@...radead.org,
        Greg Thelen <gthelen@...gle.com>
Subject: Re: [PATCH v5 1/1] mm: report per-page metadata information

On Thu, Nov 2, 2023 at 6:07 PM Pasha Tatashin <pasha.tatashin@...een.com> wrote:
>
> On Thu, Nov 2, 2023 at 4:22 PM Wei Xu <weixugc@...gle.com> wrote:
> >
> > On Thu, Nov 2, 2023 at 11:34 AM Pasha Tatashin
> > <pasha.tatashin@...een.com> wrote:
> > >
> > > > > > I could have sworn that I pointed that out in a previous version and
> > > > > > requested to document that special case in the patch description. :)
> > > > >
> > > > > Sounds, good we will document that parts of per-page may not be part
> > > > > of MemTotal.
> > > >
> > > > But this still doesn't answer how we can use the new PageMetadata
> > > > field to help break down the runtime kernel overhead within MemUsed
> > > > (MemTotal - MemFree).
> > >
> > > I am not sure it matters to the end users: they look at PageMetadata
> > > with or without Page Owner, page_table_check, HugeTLB and it shows
> > > exactly how much per-page overhead changed. Where the kernel allocated
> > > that memory is not that important to the end user as long as that
> > > memory became available to them.
> > >
> > > In addition, it is still possible to estimate the actual memblock part
> > > of Per-page metadata by looking at /proc/zoneinfo:
> > >
> > > Memblock reserved per-page metadata: "present_pages - managed_pages"
> >
> > This assumes that all reserved memblocks are per-page metadata. As I
>
> Right after boot, when all Per-page metadata is still from memblocks,
> we could determine what part of the zone reserved memory is not
> per-page, and use it later in our calculations.
>
> > mentioned earlier, it is not a robust approach.
> > > If there is something big that we will allocate in that range, we
> > > should probably also export it in some form.
> > >
> > > If this field does not fit in /proc/meminfo due to not fully being
> > > part of MemTotal, we could just keep it under nodeN/, as a separate
> > > file, as suggested by Greg.
> > >
> > > However, I think it is useful enough to have an easy system wide view
> > > for Per-page metadata.
> >
> > It is fine to have this as a separate, informational sysfs file under
> > nodeN/, outside of meminfo. I just don't think as in the current
> > implementation (where PageMetadata is a mixture of buddy and memblock
> > allocations), it can help with the use case that motivates this
> > change, i.e. to improve the breakdown of the kernel overhead.
> > > > > > > are allocated), so what would be the best way to export page metadata
> > > > > > > without redefining MemTotal? Keep the new field in /proc/meminfo but
> > > > > > > be ok that it is not part of MemTotal or do two counters? If we do two
> > > > > > > counters, we will still need to keep one that is a buddy allocator in
> > > > > > > /proc/meminfo and the other one somewhere outside?
> > > > > >
> > > >
> > > > I think the simplest thing to do now is to only report the buddy
> > > > allocations of per-page metadata in meminfo.  The meaning of the new
> > >
> > > This will cause PageMetadata to be 0 on 99% of the systems, and
> > > essentially become useless to the vast majority of users.
> >
> > I don't think it is a major issue. There are other fields (e.g. Zswap)
> > in meminfo that remain 0 when the feature is not used.
>
> Since we are going to use two independent interfaces
> /proc/meminfo/PageMetadata and nodeN/page_metadata (in a separate file
> as requested by Greg) How about if in /proc/meminfo we provide only
> the buddy allocator part, and in nodeN/page_metadata we provide the
> total per-page overhead in the given node that include memblock
> reserves, and buddy allocator memory?

What we want is the system-wide breakdown of kernel memory usage. It
works for this use case with the new PageMetadata counter in
/proc/meminfo to report only buddy-allocated per-page metadata.

> Pasha

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