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Date:   Thu, 14 May 2020 08:07:59 +0200
From:   Jiri Pirko <>
To:     Simon Horman <>
Subject: Re: [oss-drivers] [RFC v2] current devlink extension plan for NICs

Wed, May 13, 2020 at 03:00:09PM CEST, wrote:
>On Fri, May 01, 2020 at 11:14:49AM +0200, Jiri Pirko wrote:
>> Hi all.
>> First, I would like to apologize for very long email. But I think it
>> would be beneficial to the see the whole picture, where we are going.
>> Currently we are working internally on several features with
>> need of extension of the current devlink infrastructure. I took a stab
>> at putting it all together in a single txt file, inlined below.
>> Most of the stuff is based on a new port sub-object called "func"
>> (called "slice" previously" and "subdev" originally in Yuval's patchsets
>> sent some while ago).
>> The text describes how things should behave and provides a draft
>> of user facing console input/outputs. I think it is important to clear
>> that up before we go in and implement the devlink core and
>> driver pieces.
>> I would like to ask you to read this and comment. Especially, I would
>> like to ask vendors if what is described fits the needs of your
>> NIC/e-switch.
>> Please note that something is already implemented, but most of this
>> isn't (see "what needs to be implemented" section).
>> v1->v2
>> - mainly move from separate slice object into port/func subobject
>> - couple of small fixes here and there
>> ==================================================================
>> ||                                                              ||
>> ||            Overall illustration of example setup             ||
>> ||                                                              ||
>> ==================================================================
>> Note that there are 2 hosts in the picture. Host A may be the smartnic host,
>> Host B may be one of the hosts which gets PF. Also, you might omit
>> the Host B and just see Host A like an ordinary nic in a host.
>> Note that the PF is merged with physical port representor.
>> That is due to simpler and flawless transition from legacy mode and back.
>> The devlink_ports and netdevs for physical ports are staying during
>> the transition.
>Hi Jiri,
>I'm probably missing something obvious but this merge seems at odds with
>the Netronome hardware.
>We model a PF as, in a nutshell, a PCIE link to a host. A chip may have
>one or more, and these may go to the same or different hosts. A chip may
>also have one or more physical ports. And there is no strict relationship
>between a PF and a physical port.

Yeah, no problem. You can have multiple physical ports under the same
devlink instance. In that case, from devlink perspective it is not
important if the physical port is backed by PF or not. I will rephrase a
bit so this is clear.

>Of course in SR-IOV legacy mode, there is such a relationship, but its not
>inherent to the hardware nor the NFP driver implementation of SR-IOV
>switchdev mode.

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