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Date:	Tue, 04 Sep 2012 08:35:47 +0200
From:	Giuseppe CAVALLARO <>
To:	Ben Hutchings <>
Cc:, "David S. Miller" <>
Subject: Re: [net-next.git 5/7] stmmac: add sysFs support

Hello Ben

On 9/3/2012 5:09 PM, Ben Hutchings wrote:
> On Mon, 2012-09-03 at 15:36 +0200, Giuseppe CAVALLARO wrote:
>> Hello Ben,
>> On 9/3/2012 2:44 PM, Ben Hutchings wrote:
>>> On Mon, 2012-09-03 at 09:47 +0200, Giuseppe CAVALLARO wrote:
>>>> This patch adds the sysFs support.
>>>> Some internal driver parameters can be tuned by using some
>>>> entries exposed via sysFS. There parameter currently are,
>>>> for example, for internal timers used to mitigate the rx/tx
>>>> interrupts or for EEE.
>>> [...]
>>> Why are you not exposing these through the standard ethtool operations?
>>> Ben.
>> yes I want to expose them via ethtool and I'll do this as soon as I have
>> clear with ethtool parameters have to be used (
>> ).
> Sorry, I meant to reply to that but didn't get round to it.

No problem at all :-) ... we are discussing about that in the thread.

>> For the reception side, I have the RI Watchdog Timer count field and I
>> do not know what is the appropriate ethtool parameter to use.
>> From the Synopsys databook, the RI Watchdog Timer count indicates the
>> number of system clock cycles. When the it runs out, the receive
>> interrupt bit is set and the timer is stopped.
>> No idea if it can be actually covered, for example, with
>> rx_coalesce_usecs_irq.
> As I understand it, interrupt moderation time is supposed to be the
> minimum time between completion IRQs, not a minimum delay from
> completion-with-IRQ-armed to assertion of the IRQ.  The timer should
> start running again immediately after the associated IRQ is asserted.
> But I don't know whether it's universally implemented this way.

Yes this is the point and my initial doubt.

> The field names including '_irq' are to be used if the hardware can use
> a different moderation time while the IRQ is still masked (i.e. NAPI or
> hard interrupt handler is still running).  I think most hardware doesn't
> support this.

Indeed, the watchdog represents the number of system clock cycles to
delay the RX interrupt after a packet arrives so IIUC I can use the

>> For the transmission I have a SW timer that periodically calls the tx
>> function (stmmac_tx) and a threshold to also set the "Interrupt on
>> completion" bit in the TDES when a frame is transmitted.
>> I wonder (but not sure) if in this case I could be: tx_coalesce_usec and
>> tx_mac_coalesced_frames.
>> From the kernel documentation IIUC these seem to have other meaning.
> The semantics don't seem to match the documentation exactly but I think
> this is probably close enough.

So IIUC I can use the ethtool coalesce parameters above for the stmmac.
I mean: tx_coalesce_usec and tx_mac_coalesced_frames.

Anyway I'm happy to remove the sysFS (rightly rejected by David) and use
the standard ethtool. So I'll provide new patches after testing all.

Thanks again for your feedback, and let me know if I missed something.


> Ben.
>> No problem, to extend ethtool to cover these kind of parameters if
>> necessary.

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