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Date:   Mon, 07 Sep 2020 10:49:00 +0200
From:   Toke Høiland-Jørgensen <toke@...hat.com>
To:     Andrii Nakryiko <andrii.nakryiko@...il.com>,
        Alexei Starovoitov <alexei.starovoitov@...il.com>
Cc:     Stanislav Fomichev <sdf@...gle.com>,
        Networking <netdev@...r.kernel.org>, bpf <bpf@...r.kernel.org>,
        "David S. Miller" <davem@...emloft.net>,
        Alexei Starovoitov <ast@...nel.org>,
        Daniel Borkmann <daniel@...earbox.net>,
        YiFei Zhu <zhuyifei@...gle.com>,
        YiFei Zhu <zhuyifei1999@...il.com>,
        Andrey Ignatov <rdna@...com>
Subject: Re: [PATCH bpf-next v3 3/8] libbpf: Add BPF_PROG_BIND_MAP syscall
 and use it on .metadata section

Andrii Nakryiko <andrii.nakryiko@...il.com> writes:

>> May be we should talk about problem statement and goals.
>> Do we actually need metadata per program or metadata per single .o
>> or metadata per final .o with multiple .o linked together?
>> What is this metadata?
>
> Yep, that's a very valid question. I've also CC'ed Andrey.

For the libxdp use case, I need metadata per program. But I'm already
sticking that in a single section and disambiguating by struct name
(just prefixing the function name with a _ ), so I think it's fine to
have this kind of "concatenated metadata" per elf file and parse out the
per-program information from that. This is similar to the BTF-encoded
"metadata" we can do today.

>> If it's just unreferenced by program read only data then no special names or
>> prefixes are needed. We can introduce BPF_PROG_BIND_MAP to bind any map to any
>> program and it would be up to tooling to decide the meaning of the data in the
>> map. For example, bpftool can choose to print all variables from all read only
>> maps that match "bpf_metadata_" prefix, but it will be bpftool convention only
>> and not hard coded in libbpf.
>
> Agree as well. It feels a bit odd for libbpf to handle ".metadata"
> specially, given libbpf itself doesn't care about its contents at all.
>
> So thanks for bringing this up, I think this is an important
> discussion to have.

I'm fine with having this be part of .rodata. One drawback, though, is
that if any metadata is defined, it becomes a bit more complicated to
use bpf_map__set_initial_value() because that now also has to include
the metadata. Any way we can improve upon that?

-Toke

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