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Subject: Re: [virtio-comment] [PATCH 1/1] virtio-pmem: Support PCI BAR-relative addresses

On Fri, Jul 23, 2021 at 09:18:21PM +0200, David Hildenbrand wrote:
> On 23.07.21 20:38, Taylor Stark wrote:
> >On Fri, Jul 23, 2021 at 09:01:48AM +0200, David Hildenbrand wrote:
> >>On 23.07.21 01:26, Taylor Stark wrote:
> >>>On Thu, Jul 22, 2021 at 01:24:17PM +0200, Cornelia Huck wrote:
> >>>>On Wed, Jul 21 2021, tstark@linux.microsoft.com wrote:
> >>>>
> >>>>>From: Taylor Stark <tstark@microsoft.com>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>Update the virtio-pmem RFC spec to add support for describing the pmem region
> >>>>>via PCI BARs. Shared memory windows are used to accomplish this, similar to
> >>>>>virtio-fs and virtio-gpu. This is required to support virtio-pmem in Hyper-V,
> >>>>>since Hyper-V only allows PCI devices to operate on memory ranges defined via
> >>>>>BARs.
> >>>>
> >>>>Given that we already have pmem support out there (even though the spec
> >>>>has not been included yet, should this get a feature?
> >>>
> >>>I wasn't sure if we needed to handle backwards compatibility given that pmem
> >>>hasn't been merged into the spec yet. If we do, then yes I think it makes sense
> >>>to add a feature bit. How about VIRTIO_PMEM_F_SHMEM_REGION?
> >>
> >>The implementations that are upstream win, and usually we get a spec
> >>after the implementation is mature. The spec merely documents what
> >>the existing implementations are doing. Of course, one can plan
> >>ahead and propose additions to the spec that won't break existing
> >>setups.
> >>
> >>The feature seems to be glued to PCI BARs, right? Maybe that should
> >>be part of the feature name.
> >>
> >>-- 
> >>Thanks,
> >>
> >>David / dhildenb
> >
> >I had to do a bit of research to develop an opinion on including BAR in
> >the name. Using BARs is the implementation for the PCI transport, but there
> >are other transports that have support for shared memory regions but don't
> >use BARs (e.g. mmio - see vm_get_shm_region). Using shared memory regions
> >was initially a convenient way to use PCI BARs, but I think it could be
> >valuable for other transports as well (it adds similarity with other virtio
> >devices). So I think it makes sense to leave BAR out of the name, since
> >that's transport specific. Maybe I should retitle the patch? Let me know
> >your thoughts (especially since I'm learning on the fly).
> Ah, the content doesn't actually talk about PCI BARs, that's my
> source of confusion :)
> I know that virtio-fs also uses BARs in DAX mode, but I have no idea
> how they named features (if any?) or how they described it in their
> spec. Might be worth exploring.
> -- 
> Thanks,
> David / dhildenb

After doing the research from my previous mail, I agree including BARs
in the name is confusing. I think I'll update the patch to just refer to
shared memory regions.

virtio-fs is actually how we landed on adding shared memory region support
to virtio-pmem. We got virtio-fs working in Hyper-V, then tried virtio-pmem,
ran into the guest absolute address problem, then went "well virtio-fs
works, what does that do?", and here we are :)

virtio-fs doesn't have any relevant features. The presence of the shared
memory region indicates to the driver that additional functionality is
available, if desired. I initially did the same thing with this update to
virtio-pmem, instead of using a feature. But a feature makes more sense
for preserving backwards compatibility. And it's actually useful for
Hyper-V as well, since we need to reject any drivers that don't support
the feature since we have no way to configure them.


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