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Re: [PATCH] xen: core dom0 support

From:  Jeremy Fitzhardinge <>
To:  Andrew Morton <>
Subject:  Re: [PATCH] xen: core dom0 support
Date:  Fri, 27 Feb 2009 22:52:24 -0800
Message-ID:  <>
Cc:  Xen-devel <>, the arch/x86 maintainers <>, Linux Kernel Mailing List <>, "H. Peter Anvin" <>
Archive-link:  Article

Andrew Morton wrote:
> On Fri, 27 Feb 2009 17:59:06 -0800 Jeremy Fitzhardinge <> wrote:
>> This series implements the core parts of Xen dom0 support; that is, just
>> enough to get the kernel started when booted by Xen as a dom0 kernel.
> And what other patches can we expect to see to complete the xen dom0
> support?

There's a bit of a gradient.  There's probably another 2-3 similarly 
sized series to get everything so that you can boot dom0 out of the box 
(core, apic, swiotlb/agp/drm, backend drivers, tools).  And then a 
scattering of smaller things which may or may not be upstreamable.  The 
vast majority of it is Xen-specific code, rather than changes to core 
kernel.   I'm in no particular rush to get it all into the kernel, but I 
would like to get the core parts in for .30 so that its basically 
useful, and the delta to feature-complete isn't very large (a big reason 
is to keep the out-of-tree patch size down for distros).

> I hate to be the one to say it, but we should sit down and work out
> whether it is justifiable to merge any of this into Linux.  I think
> it's still the case that the Xen technology is the "old" way and that
> the world is moving off in the "new" direction, KVM?

I don't think that's a particularly useful way to look at it.  They're 
different approaches to the problem, and have different tradeoffs.  

The more important question is: are there real users for this stuff?   
Does not merging it cause more net disadvantage than merging it?  
Despite all the noise made about kvm in kernel circles, Xen has a large 
and growing installed base.  At the moment its all running on massive 
out-of-tree patches, which doesn't make anyone happy.  It's best that it 
be in the mainline kernel.  You know, like we argue for everything else.

> In three years time, will we regret having merged this?

Its a pretty minor amount of extra stuff on top of what's been added 
over the last 3 years, so I don't think it's going to tip the scales on 
its own.  I wouldn't be comfortable in trying to merge something that's 
very intrusive.


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