User: Password:
Subscribe / Log in / New account

Boot PV guests with more than 128GB (v3) for v3.7.

From:  Konrad Rzeszutek Wilk <>
Subject:  [PATCH] Boot PV guests with more than 128GB (v3) for v3.7.
Date:  Thu, 16 Aug 2012 12:03:18 -0400
Message-ID:  <>
Archive-link:  Article

Since (v2):
 - fixed a bug if guest booted with non-PMD aligned size (say, 899MB).
 - fixed smack warnings
 - moved a memset(xen_start_info->mfn_list, 0xff,.. ) from one patch to another.
Since v1: [
 - added more comments, and #ifdefs
 - squashed The L4 and L4, L3, and L2 recycle patches together
 - Added Acked-by's

These patches are quite baked by now. If you already looked at this before
I would just skip over it and just look at the last patch.

The explanation of these patches is exactly what v1 had:

The details of this problem are nicely explained in:

 [PATCH 4/6] xen/p2m: Add logic to revector a P2M tree to use __va
 [PATCH 5/6] xen/mmu: Copy and revector the P2M tree.
 [PATCH 6/6] xen/mmu: Remove from __ka space PMD entries for

and the supporting patches are just nice optimizations. Pasting in
what those patches mentioned:

During bootup Xen supplies us with a P2M array. It sticks
it right after the ramdisk, as can be seen with a 128GB PV guest:

(certain parts removed for clarity):
xc_dom_build_image: called
xc_dom_alloc_segment:   kernel       : 0xffffffff81000000 -> 0xffffffff81e43000 
 (pfn 0x1000 + 0xe43 pages)
xc_dom_pfn_to_ptr: domU mapping: pfn 0x1000+0xe43 at 0x7f097d8bf000
xc_dom_alloc_segment:   ramdisk      : 0xffffffff81e43000 -> 0xffffffff925c7000 
 (pfn 0x1e43 + 0x10784 pages)
xc_dom_pfn_to_ptr: domU mapping: pfn 0x1e43+0x10784 at 0x7f0952dd2000
xc_dom_alloc_segment:   phys2mach    : 0xffffffff925c7000 -> 0xffffffffa25c7000 
 (pfn 0x125c7 + 0x10000 pages)
xc_dom_pfn_to_ptr: domU mapping: pfn 0x125c7+0x10000 at 0x7f0942dd2000
xc_dom_alloc_page   :   start info   : 0xffffffffa25c7000 (pfn 0x225c7)
xc_dom_alloc_page   :   xenstore     : 0xffffffffa25c8000 (pfn 0x225c8)
xc_dom_alloc_page   :   console      : 0xffffffffa25c9000 (pfn 0x225c9)
nr_page_tables: 0x0000ffffffffffff/48: 0xffff000000000000 -> 
0xffffffffffffffff, 1 table(s)
nr_page_tables: 0x0000007fffffffff/39: 0xffffff8000000000 -> 
0xffffffffffffffff, 1 table(s)
nr_page_tables: 0x000000003fffffff/30: 0xffffffff80000000 -> 
0xffffffffbfffffff, 1 table(s)
nr_page_tables: 0x00000000001fffff/21: 0xffffffff80000000 -> 
0xffffffffa27fffff, 276 table(s)
xc_dom_alloc_segment:   page tables  : 0xffffffffa25ca000 -> 0xffffffffa26e1000 
 (pfn 0x225ca + 0x117 pages)
xc_dom_pfn_to_ptr: domU mapping: pfn 0x225ca+0x117 at 0x7f097d7a8000
xc_dom_alloc_page   :   boot stack   : 0xffffffffa26e1000 (pfn 0x226e1)
xc_dom_build_image  : virt_alloc_end : 0xffffffffa26e2000
xc_dom_build_image  : virt_pgtab_end : 0xffffffffa2800000

So the physical memory and virtual (using __START_KERNEL_map addresses)
layout looks as so:

  phys                             __ka
/------------\                   /-------------------\
| 0          | empty             | 0xffffffff80000000|
| ..         |                   | ..                |
| 16MB       | <= kernel starts  | 0xffffffff81000000|
| ..         |                   |                   |
| 30MB       | <= kernel ends => | 0xffffffff81e43000|
| ..         |  & ramdisk starts | ..                |
| 293MB      | <= ramdisk ends=> | 0xffffffff925c7000|
| ..         |  & P2M starts     | ..                |
| ..         |                   | ..                |
| 549MB      | <= P2M ends    => | 0xffffffffa25c7000|
| ..         | start_info        | 0xffffffffa25c7000|
| ..         | xenstore          | 0xffffffffa25c8000|
| ..         | cosole            | 0xffffffffa25c9000|
| 549MB      | <= page tables => | 0xffffffffa25ca000|
| ..         |                   |                   |
| 550MB      | <= PGT end     => | 0xffffffffa26e1000|
| ..         | boot stack        |                   |
\------------/                   \-------------------/

As can be seen, the ramdisk, P2M and pagetables are taking
a bit of __ka addresses space. Which is a problem since the
MODULES_VADDR starts at 0xffffffffa0000000 - and P2M sits
right in there! This results during bootup with the inability to
load modules, with this error:

------------[ cut here ]------------
WARNING: at /home/konrad/ssd/linux/mm/vmalloc.c:106 
Call Trace:
 [<ffffffff810719fa>] warn_slowpath_common+0x7a/0xb0
 [<ffffffff81030279>] ? __raw_callee_save_xen_pmd_val+0x11/0x1e
 [<ffffffff81071a45>] warn_slowpath_null+0x15/0x20
 [<ffffffff81130b89>] vmap_page_range_noflush+0x2d9/0x370
 [<ffffffff81130c4d>] map_vm_area+0x2d/0x50
 [<ffffffff811326d0>] __vmalloc_node_range+0x160/0x250
 [<ffffffff810c5369>] ? module_alloc_update_bounds+0x19/0x80
 [<ffffffff810c6186>] ? load_module+0x66/0x19c0
 [<ffffffff8105cadc>] module_alloc+0x5c/0x60
 [<ffffffff810c5369>] ? module_alloc_update_bounds+0x19/0x80
 [<ffffffff810c5369>] module_alloc_update_bounds+0x19/0x80
 [<ffffffff810c70c3>] load_module+0xfa3/0x19c0
 [<ffffffff812491f6>] ? security_file_permission+0x86/0x90
 [<ffffffff810c7b3a>] sys_init_module+0x5a/0x220
 [<ffffffff815ce339>] system_call_fastpath+0x16/0x1b
---[ end trace fd8f7704fdea0291 ]---
vmalloc: allocation failure, allocated 16384 of 20480 bytes
modprobe: page allocation failure: order:0, mode:0xd2

Since the __va and __ka are 1:1 up to MODULES_VADDR and
cleanup_highmap rids __ka of the ramdisk mapping, what
we want to do is similar - get rid of the P2M in the __ka
address space. There are two ways of fixing this:

 1) All P2M lookups instead of using the __ka address would
    use the __va address. This means we can safely erase from
    __ka space the PMD pointers that point to the PFNs for
    P2M array and be OK.
 2). Allocate a new array, copy the existing P2M into it,
    revector the P2M tree to use that, and return the old
    P2M to the memory allocate. This has the advantage that
    it sets the stage for using XEN_ELF_NOTE_INIT_P2M
    feature. That feature allows us to set the exact virtual
    address space we want for the P2M - and allows us to
    boot as initial domain on large machines.

So we pick option 2).

This patch only lays the groundwork in the P2M code. The patch
that modifies the MMU is called "xen/mmu: Copy and revector the P2M tree."

-- xen/mmu: Copy and revector the P2M tree:

The 'xen_revector_p2m_tree()' function allocates a new P2M tree
copies the contents of the old one in it, and returns the new one.

At this stage, the __ka address space (which is what the old
P2M tree was using) is partially disassembled. The cleanup_highmap
has removed the PMD entries from 0-16MB and anything past _brk_end
up to the max_pfn_mapped (which is the end of the ramdisk).

We have revectored the P2M tree (and the one for save/restore as well)
to use new shiny __va address to new MFNs. The xen_start_info
has been taken care of already in 'xen_setup_kernel_pagetable()' and
xen_start_info->shared_info in 'xen_setup_shared_info()', so
we are free to roam and delete PMD entries - which is exactly what
we are going to do. We rip out the __ka for the old P2M array.

-- xen/mmu:   Remove from __ka space PMD entries for

At this stage, the __ka address space (which is what the old
P2M tree was using) is partially disassembled. The cleanup_highmap
has removed the PMD entries from 0-16MB and anything past _brk_end
up to the max_pfn_mapped (which is the end of the ramdisk).

The xen_remove_p2m_tree and code around has ripped out the __ka for
the old P2M array.

Here we continue on doing it to where the Xen page-tables were.
It is safe to do it, as the page-tables are addressed using __va.
For good measure we delete anything that is within MODULES_VADDR
and up to the end of the PMD.

At this point the __ka only contains PMD entries for the start
of the kernel up to __brk.

To unsubscribe from this list: send the line "unsubscribe linux-kernel" in
the body of a message to
More majordomo info at
Please read the FAQ at

Copyright © 2012, Eklektix, Inc.
Comments and public postings are copyrighted by their creators.
Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds