On Mon, 2007-09-24 at 13:04 -0700, Linus Torvalds wrote:
>
> On Mon, 24 Sep 2007, Badari Pulavarty wrote:
> >
> > Whats happening on my machine is ..
> >
> > dbench forks of 4 children and sends them a signal to start the work.
> > 3 out of 4 children gets the signal and does the work. One of the child
> > never gets the signal so, it waits forever in pause(). So, parent waits
> > for a longtime to kill it.

>
> Since this *seems* to have nothing to do with the filesystem, and since it
> *seems* to have been introduced between -rc3 and -rc4, I did
>
> gitk v2.6.23-rc3..v2.6.23-rc4 -- kernel/
>
> to see what has changed. One of the commits was signal-related, and that
> one doesn't look like it could possibly matter.
>
> The rest were scheduler-related, which doesn't surprise me. In fact, even
> before I looked, my reaction to your bug report was "That sounds like an
> application race condition".
>
> Applications shouldn't use "pause()" for waiting for a signal. It's a
> fundamentally racy interface - the signal could have happened just
> *before* calling pause. So it's almost always a bug to use pause(), and
> any users should be fixed to use "sigsuspend()" instead, which can
> atomically (and correctly) pause for a signal while the process has masked
> it outside of the system call.
>
> Now, I took a look at the dbench sources, and I have to say that the race
> looks *very* unlikely (there's quite a small window in which it does
>
> children[i].status = getpid();
> ** race window here **
> pause();
>
> and it would require *just* the right timing so that the parent doesn't
> end up doing the "sleep(1)" (which would make the window even less likely
> to be hit), but there does seem to be a race condition there. And it
> *could* be that you just happen to hit it on your hw setup.
>
> So before you do anything else, does this patch (TOTALLY UNTESTED! DONE
> ENTIRELY LOOKING AT THE SOURCE! IT MAY RAPE ALL YOUR PETS, AND CALL YOU
> BAD NAMES!) make any difference?
>
> (patch against unmodified dbench-2.0)
>
> Linus
>
> ---
> diff --git a/dbench.c b/dbench.c
> index ccf5624..4be5712 100644
> --- a/dbench.c
> +++ b/dbench.c
> @@ -91,10 +91,15 @@ static double create_procs(int nprocs, void (*fn)(struct child_struct * ))
>
> for (i=0;i > if (fork() == 0) {
> + sigset_t old, blocked;
> +
> + sigemptyset(&blocked);
> + sigaddset(&blocked, SIGCONT);
> + sigprocmask(SIG_BLOCK, &blocked, &old);
> setbuffer(stdout, NULL, 0);
> nb_setup(&children[i]);
> children[i].status = getpid();
> - pause();
> + sigsuspend(&old);
> fn(&children[i]);
> _exit(0);
> }


With the modified dbench, I couldn't reproduce the problem so far.
I will let it run through the night (just to be sure).

For now, we can treat it as a tool/App issue

Thanks,
Badari

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