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Date:	Sat, 18 Aug 2007 14:54:09 -0700
From:	"Paul E. McKenney" <paulmck@...ux.vnet.ibm.com>
To:	Linus Torvalds <torvalds@...ux-foundation.org>
Cc:	Satyam Sharma <satyam@...radead.org>,
	Christoph Lameter <clameter@....com>,
	Herbert Xu <herbert@...dor.apana.org.au>,
	Nick Piggin <nickpiggin@...oo.com.au>,
	Paul Mackerras <paulus@...ba.org>,
	Segher Boessenkool <segher@...nel.crashing.org>,
	heiko.carstens@...ibm.com, horms@...ge.net.au,
	linux-kernel@...r.kernel.org, rpjday@...dspring.com, ak@...e.de,
	netdev@...r.kernel.org, cfriesen@...tel.com,
	akpm@...ux-foundation.org, jesper.juhl@...il.com,
	linux-arch@...r.kernel.org, zlynx@....org, schwidefsky@...ibm.com,
	Chris Snook <csnook@...hat.com>, davem@...emloft.net,
	wensong@...ux-vs.org, wjiang@...ilience.com
Subject: Re: [PATCH 0/24] make atomic_read() behave consistently across all architectures

On Fri, Aug 17, 2007 at 09:13:35PM -0700, Linus Torvalds wrote:
> 
> 
> On Sat, 18 Aug 2007, Satyam Sharma wrote:
> > 
> > No code does (or would do, or should do):
> > 
> > 	x.counter++;
> > 
> > on an "atomic_t x;" anyway.
> 
> That's just an example of a general problem.
> 
> No, you don't use "x.counter++". But you *do* use
> 
> 	if (atomic_read(&x) <= 1)
> 
> and loading into a register is stupid and pointless, when you could just 
> do it as a regular memory-operand to the cmp instruction.
> 
> And as far as the compiler is concerned, the problem is the 100% same: 
> combining operations with the volatile memop.
> 
> The fact is, a compiler that thinks that
> 
> 	movl mem,reg
> 	cmpl $val,reg
> 
> is any better than
> 
> 	cmpl $val,mem
> 
> is just not a very good compiler. But when talking about "volatile", 
> that's exactly what ytou always get (and always have gotten - this is 
> not a regression, and I doubt gcc is alone in this).

One of the gcc guys claimed that he thought that the two-instruction
sequence would be faster on some x86 machines.  I pointed out that
there might be a concern about code size.  I chose not to point out
that people might also care about the other x86 machines.  ;-)

							Thanx, Paul
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