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Date:   Mon, 28 Mar 2022 14:02:04 +0200
From:   Halil Pasic <>
To:     Linus Torvalds <>
Cc:     Toke Høiland-Jørgensen <>,
        Robin Murphy <>,
        Christoph Hellwig <>,
        Maxime Bizon <>,
        Oleksandr Natalenko <>,
        Marek Szyprowski <>,
        Kalle Valo <>,
        "David S. Miller" <>,
        Jakub Kicinski <>,
        Paolo Abeni <>,
        Olha Cherevyk <>,
        iommu <>,
        linux-wireless <>,
        Netdev <>,
        Linux Kernel Mailing List <>,
        Greg Kroah-Hartman <>,
        stable <>,
        Halil Pasic <>
Subject: Re: [REGRESSION] Recent swiotlb DMA_FROM_DEVICE fixes break
 ath9k-based AP

On Sun, 27 Mar 2022 17:30:01 -0700
Linus Torvalds <> wrote:

> On Sun, Mar 27, 2022 at 4:52 PM Halil Pasic <> wrote:
> >
> > I have no intention of pursuing this.  When fixing the information leak,
> > I happened to realize, that a somewhat similar situation can emerge when
> > mappings are reused. It seemed like an easy fix, so I asked the swiotlb
> > maintainers, and they agreed. It ain't my field of expertise, and the
> > drivers I'm interested in don't need this functionality.  
> Ok.
> That said, I think you are putting yourself down when you said in an
> earlier email that you aren't veryt knowledgeable in this area.
> I think the fact that you *did* think of this other similar situation
> is actually very interesting, and it's something people probably
> _haven't_ been thinking about.

Thank you!

> So I think your first commit fixes the straightforward and common case
> where you do that "map / partial dma / unmap" case.
> And that straightforward case is probably all that the disk IO case
> ever really triggers, which is presumably why those "drivers I'm
> interested in don't need this functionality" don't need anything else?

I agree.

> And yes, your second commit didn't work, but hey, whatever. The whole
> "multiple operations on the same double buffering allocation"
> situation is something I don't think people have necessarily thought
> about enough.
> And by that I don't mean you. I mean very much the whole history of
> our dma mapping code.

I agree. We are in the process of catching up! :) My idea was to aid
a process, as a relatively naive pair of eyes: somebody didn't read any
data sheets describing non-cache-coherent DMA, and never programmed
a DMA. It is a fairly common problem, that for the very knowledgeable
certain things seem obvious, self-explanatory or trivial, but for the
less knowledgeable the are not. And knowledge can create bias.

> I then get opinionated and probably too forceful, but please don't
> take it as being about you - it's about just my frustration with that
> code - and if it comes off too negative then please accept my
> apologies.

I have to admit, I did feel a little uncomfortable, and I did look for
an exit strategy. I do believe, that people in your position do have to
occasionally get forceful, and even abrasive to maintain efficiency. I
try to not ignore the social aspect of things, but I do get carried away

Your last especially paragraph is very encouraging and welcome. Thank



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