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Re: [Qemu-devel] [PATCH v7 01/42] Start documenting how postcopy works.

From: Yang Hongyang
Subject: Re: [Qemu-devel] [PATCH v7 01/42] Start documenting how postcopy works.
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 2015 14:46:49 +0800
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:31.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/31.5.0

Hi Dave,

On 06/16/2015 06:26 PM, Dr. David Alan Gilbert (git) wrote:
From: "Dr. David Alan Gilbert" <address@hidden>

+= Postcopy =
+'Postcopy' migration is a way to deal with migrations that refuse to converge;
+its plus side is that there is an upper bound on the amount of migration 
+and time it takes, the down side is that during the postcopy phase, a failure 
+*either* side or the network connection causes the guest to be lost.
+In postcopy the destination CPUs are started before all the memory has been
+transferred, and accesses to pages that are yet to be transferred cause
+a fault that's translated by QEMU into a request to the source QEMU.

I have a immature idea,
Can we keep a source RAM cache on destination QEMU, instead of request to the
source QEMU, that is:
 - When start_postcopy issued, source will paused, and __open another socket
   (maybe another migration thread)__ to send the remaining dirty pages to
   destination, at the same time, destination will start, and cache the
   remaining pages.
 - When the page fault occured, first lookup the page in the CACHE, if it is not
   yet received, request to the source QEMU.
 - Once the remaining dirty pages are transfered, the source QEMU can go now.

The existing postcopy mechanism does not need to be changed, just add the
remaining page transfer mechanism, and the RAM cache.

I don't know if it is feasible and whether it will bring improvement to the
postcopy, what do you think?

+Postcopy can be combined with precopy (i.e. normal migration) so that if 
+doesn't finish in a given time the switch is made to postcopy.
+=== Enabling postcopy ===
+To enable postcopy (prior to the start of migration):
+migrate_set_capability x-postcopy-ram on
+The migration will still start in precopy mode, however issuing:
+will now cause the transition from precopy to postcopy.
+It can be issued immediately after migration is started or any
+time later on.  Issuing it after the end of a migration is harmless.
+=== Postcopy device transfer ===
+Loading of device data may cause the device emulation to access guest RAM
+that may trigger faults that have to be resolved by the source, as such
+the migration stream has to be able to respond with page data *during* the
+device load, and hence the device data has to be read from the stream 
+before the device load begins to free the stream up.  This is achieved by
+'packaging' the device data into a blob that's read in one go.
+Source behaviour
+Until postcopy is entered the migration stream is identical to normal
+precopy, except for the addition of a 'postcopy advise' command at
+the beginning, to tell the destination that postcopy might happen.
+When postcopy starts the source sends the page discard data and then
+forms the 'package' containing:
+   Command: 'postcopy listen'
+   The device state
+      A series of sections, identical to the precopy streams device state 
+      containing everything except postcopiable devices (i.e. RAM)
+   Command: 'postcopy run'
+The 'package' is sent as the data part of a Command: 'CMD_PACKAGED', and the
+contents are formatted in the same way as the main migration stream.
+Destination behaviour
+Initially the destination looks the same as precopy, with a single thread
+reading the migration stream; the 'postcopy advise' and 'discard' commands
+are processed to change the way RAM is managed, but don't affect the stream
+                        1      2   3     4 5                      6   7
+thread                             |       |
+                                   |     (page request)
+                                   |        \___
+                                   v            \
+listen thread:                     --- page -- page -- page -- page -- page --
+                                   a   b        c
+On receipt of CMD_PACKAGED (1)
+   All the data associated with the package - the ( ... ) section in the
+diagram - is read into memory (into a QEMUSizedBuffer), and the main thread
+recurses into qemu_loadvm_state_main to process the contents of the package (2)
+which contains commands (3,6) and devices (4...)
+On receipt of 'postcopy listen' - 3 -(i.e. the 1st command in the package)
+a new thread (a) is started that takes over servicing the migration stream,
+while the main thread carries on loading the package.   It loads normal
+background page data (b) but if during a device load a fault happens (5) the
+returned page (c) is loaded by the listen thread allowing the main threads
+device load to carry on.
+The last thing in the CMD_PACKAGED is a 'RUN' command (6) letting the 
+CPUs start running.
+At the end of the CMD_PACKAGED (7) the main thread returns to normal running 
+and is no longer used by migration, while the listen thread carries
+on servicing page data until the end of migration.
+=== Postcopy states ===
+Postcopy moves through a series of states (see postcopy_state) from
+  Advise: Set at the start of migration if postcopy is enabled, even
+          if it hasn't had the start command; here the destination
+          checks that its OS has the support needed for postcopy, and performs
+          setup to ensure the RAM mappings are suitable for later postcopy.
+          (Triggered by reception of POSTCOPY_ADVISE command)
+  Listen: The first command in the package, POSTCOPY_LISTEN, switches
+          the destination state to Listen, and starts a new thread
+          (the 'listen thread') which takes over the job of receiving
+          pages off the migration stream, while the main thread carries
+          on processing the blob.  With this thread able to process page
+          reception, the destination now 'sensitises' the RAM to detect
+          any access to missing pages (on Linux using the 'userfault'
+          system).
+  Running: POSTCOPY_RUN causes the destination to synchronise all
+          state and start the CPUs and IO devices running.  The main
+          thread now finishes processing the migration package and
+          now carries on as it would for normal precopy migration
+          (although it can't do the cleanup it would do as it
+          finishes a normal migration).
+  End: The listen thread can now quit, and perform the cleanup of migration
+          state, the migration is now complete.
+=== Source side page maps ===
+The source side keeps two bitmaps during postcopy; 'the migration bitmap'
+and 'sent map'.  The 'migration bitmap' is basically the same as in
+the precopy case, and holds a bit to indicate that page is 'dirty' -
+i.e. needs sending.  During the precopy phase this is updated as the CPU
+dirties pages, however during postcopy the CPUs are stopped and nothing
+should dirty anything any more.
+The 'sent map' is used for the transition to postcopy. It is a bitmap that
+has a bit set whenever a page is sent to the destination, however during
+the transition to postcopy mode it is masked against the migration bitmap
+(sentmap &= migrationbitmap) to generate a bitmap recording pages that
+have been previously been sent but are now dirty again.  This masked
+sentmap is sent to the destination which discards those now dirty pages
+before starting the CPUs.
+Note that the contents of the sentmap are sacrificed during the calculation
+of the discard set and thus aren't valid once in postcopy.  The dirtymap
+is still valid and is used to ensure that no page is sent more than once.  Any
+request for a page that has already been sent is ignored.  Duplicate requests
+such as this can happen as a page is sent at about the same time the
+destination accesses it.


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