[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [Qemu-devel] [Qemu-block] Guest unresponsive after Virtqueue size ex

From: Stefan Hajnoczi
Subject: Re: [Qemu-devel] [Qemu-block] Guest unresponsive after Virtqueue size exceeded error
Date: Fri, 22 Feb 2019 14:04:20 +0000

On Fri, Feb 22, 2019 at 12:57 PM Fernando Casas Schössow
<address@hidden> wrote:

I have CCed Natanael Copa, qemu package maintainer in Alpine Linux.

Fernando: Can you confirm that the bug occurs with an unmodified
Alpine Linux qemu binary?

Richard: Commit 7db2145a6826b14efceb8dd64bfe6ad8647072eb ("bswap: Add
host endian unaligned access functions") introduced the unaligned
memory access functions in question here.  Please see below for
details on the bug - basically QEMU code assumes they are atomic, but
that is not guaranteed :(.  Any ideas for how to fix this?

Natanael: It seems likely that the qemu package in Alpine Linux
suffers from a compilation issue resulting in a broken QEMU.  It may
be necessary to leave the compiler optimization flag alone in APKBUILD
to work around this problem.

Here are the details.  QEMU relies on the compiler turning
memcpy(&dst, &src, 2) turning into a load instruction in
include/qemu/bswap.h:lduw_he_p() (explanation below):

/* Any compiler worth its salt will turn these memcpy into native unaligned
   operations.  Thus we don't need to play games with packed attributes, or
   inline byte-by-byte stores.  */

static inline int lduw_he_p(const void *ptr)
    uint16_t r;
    memcpy(&r, ptr, sizeof(r));
    return r;

Here is the disassembly snippet of virtqueue_pop() from Fedora 29 that
shows the load instruction:

  398166:       0f b7 42 02             movzwl 0x2(%rdx),%eax
  39816a:       66 89 43 32             mov    %ax,0x32(%rbx)

Here is the instruction sequence in the Alpine Linux binary:

  455562:    ba 02 00 00 00           mov    $0x2,%edx
  455567:    e8 74 24 f3 ff           callq  3879e0 <address@hidden>
  45556c:    0f b7 44 24 42           movzwl 0x42(%rsp),%eax
  455571:    66 41 89 47 32           mov    %ax,0x32(%r15)

It's calling memcpy instead of using a load instruction.

Fernando found that QEMU's virtqueue_pop() function sees bogus values
when loading a 16-bit guest RAM location.  Paolo figured out that the
bogus value can be produced by memcpy() when another thread is
updating the 16-bit memory location simultaneously.  This is a race
condition between one thread loading the 16-bit value and another
thread storing it (in this case a guest vcpu thread).  Sometimes
memcpy() may load one old byte and one new byte, resulting in a bogus

The symptom that Fernando experienced is a "Virtqueue size exceeded"
error message from QEMU and then the virtio-blk or virtio-scsi device
stops working.  This issue potentially affects other device emulation
code in QEMU as well, not just virtio devices.

For the time being, I suggest tweaking the APKBUILD so the memcpy() is
not generated.  Hopefully QEMU can make the code more portable in the
future so the compiler always does the expected thing, but this may
not be easily possible.


reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]