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Date: Sun, 1 Oct 2023 13:57:25 +0200
From: Greg Kroah-Hartman <gregkh@...uxfoundation.org>
To: Hannes Reinecke <hare@...e.de>
Cc: Chris Leech <cleech@...hat.com>, Christoph Hellwig <hch@....de>,
	Rasesh Mody <rmody@...vell.com>, Ariel Elior <aelior@...vell.com>,
	Sudarsana Kalluru <skalluru@...vell.com>,
	Manish Chopra <manishc@...vell.com>,
	Nilesh Javali <njavali@...vell.com>,
	Manish Rangankar <mrangankar@...vell.com>,
	Jerry Snitselaar <jsnitsel@...hat.com>,
	John Meneghini <jmeneghi@...hat.com>, Lee Duncan <lduncan@...e.com>,
	Mike Christie <michael.christie@...cle.com>,
	Hannes Reinecke <hare@...nel.org>, netdev@...r.kernel.org,
	linux-kernel@...r.kernel.org
Subject: Re: [PATCH 3/3] cnic,bnx2,bnx2x: use UIO_MEM_DMA_COHERENT

On Sun, Oct 01, 2023 at 12:44:05PM +0200, Hannes Reinecke wrote:
> On 9/30/23 20:28, Greg Kroah-Hartman wrote:
> > On Sat, Sep 30, 2023 at 11:19:20AM -0700, Chris Leech wrote:
> > > On Sat, Sep 30, 2023 at 09:06:51AM +0200, Greg Kroah-Hartman wrote:
> > > > On Fri, Sep 29, 2023 at 10:00:23AM -0700, Chris Leech wrote:
> > > > > Make use of the new UIO_MEM_DMA_COHERENT type to properly handle mmap
> > > > > for dma_alloc_coherent buffers.
> > > > 
> > > > Why are ethernet drivers messing around with UIO devices?  That's not
> > > > what UIO is for, unless you are trying to do kernel bypass for these
> > > > devices without anyone noticing?
> > > > 
> > > > confused,
> > > 
> > > It's confusing. The bnx2 driver stack included a cnic (converged nic?)
> > > module that sits between the ethernet drivers (bnx2, bnx2x) and protocol
> > > offload drivers (iscsi, fcoe, rdma).
> > > 
> > > The iscsi module (bnx2i) uses a passthrough interface from cnic to
> > > handle some network configuration that the device firmware doesn't do.
> > > It uses a uio device and a userspace component called iscsiuio to do
> > > that.
> > 
> > That's horrible, and not what the UIO api is for at all.  Configure the
> > device like any other normal kernel device, don't poke at raw memory
> > values directly, that way lies madness.
> > 
> > Have a pointer to the userspace tool anywhere?  All I found looks like a
> > full IP stack in userspace under that name, and surely that's not what
> > this api is for...
> > 
> But that's how the interface is used, in particular for the bnx2i driver.
> Problem is that the bnx2i iSCSI offload is just that, an iSCSI offload. Not
> a TCP offload. So if the iSCSI interface is configured to
> acquire the IP address via DHCP, someone has to run the DHCP protocol.
> But the iSCSI offload can't, and the bnx2i PCI device is not a network
> device so that the normal network stack can't be used.
> And so the architects of the bnx2i card decided to use UIO to pass
> the network traffic to userspace, and used the userspace 'iscsiuio'
> application to run DHCP in userspace.
> 
> But's been that way for several years now; so long, in fact, that
> the card itself has been out of support from Marvell (since quite some
> years, too, IIRC). And even the successor of that card (the qedi driver)
> is nearing EOL. Mind you, the qedi driver is using the same interface (by
> using UIO to run DHCP in userspace), so singling out the bnx2i for bad
> design can be construed as being unfair :-)

Ok, let's say they are all horrible! :)

> I agree, though, that the design is a mess.

Ok, so why are we papering over it and continuing to allow it to exist?

What "broke" to suddenly require this UIO change?  If this has been
around for a very long time, what has caused this to now require the UIO
layer to change?

thanks,

greg k-h

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