[PATCH RFC tip/core/rcu 6/6] rcu: Reduce cache-miss initialization latencies for large systems

From: Paul E. McKenney
Date: Mon Apr 23 2012 - 12:43:51 EST

From: "Paul E. McKenney" <paulmck@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

Commit #0209f649 (rcu: limit rcu_node leaf-level fanout) set an upper
limit of 16 on the leaf-level fanout for the rcu_node tree. This was
needed to reduce lock contention that was induced by the synchronization
of scheduling-clock interrupts, which was in turn needed to improve
energy efficiency for moderate-sized lightly loaded servers.

However, reducing the leaf-level fanout means that there are more
leaf-level rcu_node structures in the tree, which in turn means that
RCU's grace-period initialization incurs more cache misses. This is
not a problem on moderate-sized servers with only a few tens of CPUs,
but becomes a major source of real-time latency spikes on systems with
many hundreds of CPUs. In addition, the workloads running on these large
systems tend to be CPU-bound, which eliminates the energy-efficiency
advantages of synchronizing scheduling-clock interrupts. Therefore,
these systems need maximal values for the rcu_node leaf-level fanout.

This commit addresses this problem by introducing a new kernel parameter
named RCU_FANOUT_LEAF that directly controls the leaf-level fanout.
This parameter defaults to 16 to handle the common case of a moderate
sized lightly loaded servers, but may be set higher on larger systems.

Reported-by: Mike Galbraith <efault@xxxxxx>
Reported-by: Dimitri Sivanich <sivanich@xxxxxxx>
Signed-off-by: Paul E. McKenney <paulmck@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
init/Kconfig | 27 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++
kernel/rcutree.c | 2 +-
kernel/rcutree.h | 10 +++-------
3 files changed, 31 insertions(+), 8 deletions(-)

diff --git a/init/Kconfig b/init/Kconfig
index 85c6870..6d18ef8 100644
--- a/init/Kconfig
+++ b/init/Kconfig
@@ -458,6 +458,33 @@ config RCU_FANOUT
Select a specific number if testing RCU itself.
Take the default if unsure.

+ int "Tree-based hierarchical RCU leaf-level fanout value"
+ range 2 RCU_FANOUT if 64BIT
+ range 2 RCU_FANOUT if !64BIT
+ default 16
+ help
+ This option controls the leaf-level fanout of hierarchical
+ implementations of RCU, and allows trading off cache misses
+ against lock contention. Systems that synchronize their
+ scheduling-clock interrupts for energy-efficiency reasons will
+ want the default because the smaller leaf-level fanout keeps
+ lock contention levels acceptably low. Very large systems
+ (hundreds or thousands of CPUs) will instead want to set this
+ value to the maximum value possible in order to reduce the
+ number of cache misses incurred during RCU's grace-period
+ initialization. These systems tend to run CPU-bound, and thus
+ are not helped by synchronized interrupts, and thus tend to
+ skew them, which reduces lock contention enough that large
+ leaf-level fanouts work well.
+ Select a specific number if testing RCU itself.
+ Select the maximum permissible value for large systems.
+ Take the default if unsure.
bool "Disable tree-based hierarchical RCU auto-balancing"
diff --git a/kernel/rcutree.c b/kernel/rcutree.c
index 1050d6d..780acf8 100644
--- a/kernel/rcutree.c
+++ b/kernel/rcutree.c
@@ -2418,7 +2418,7 @@ static void __init rcu_init_levelspread(struct rcu_state *rsp)

for (i = NUM_RCU_LVLS - 1; i > 0; i--)
rsp->levelspread[i] = CONFIG_RCU_FANOUT;
- rsp->levelspread[0] = RCU_FANOUT_LEAF;
+ rsp->levelspread[0] = CONFIG_RCU_FANOUT_LEAF;
#else /* #ifdef CONFIG_RCU_FANOUT_EXACT */
static void __init rcu_init_levelspread(struct rcu_state *rsp)
diff --git a/kernel/rcutree.h b/kernel/rcutree.h
index cdd1be0..a905c20 100644
--- a/kernel/rcutree.h
+++ b/kernel/rcutree.h
@@ -29,18 +29,14 @@
#include <linux/seqlock.h>

- * Define shape of hierarchy based on NR_CPUS and CONFIG_RCU_FANOUT.
+ * Define shape of hierarchy based on NR_CPUS, CONFIG_RCU_FANOUT, and
* In theory, it should be possible to add more levels straightforwardly.
* In practice, this did work well going from three levels to four.
* Of course, your mileage may vary.
#define MAX_RCU_LVLS 4
-#define RCU_FANOUT_LEAF 16
-#else /* #if CONFIG_RCU_FANOUT > 16 */
-#endif /* #else #if CONFIG_RCU_FANOUT > 16 */

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