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After this documentation was released in July 2003, I was approached by Prentice Hall and asked to write a book on the Linux VM under the Bruce Peren's Open Book Series.

The book is available and called simply "Understanding The Linux Virtual Memory Manager". There is a lot of additional material in the book that is not available here, including details on later 2.4 kernels, introductions to 2.6, a whole new chapter on the shared memory filesystem, coverage of TLB management, a lot more code commentary, countless other additions and clarifications and a CD with lots of cool stuff on it. This material (although now dated and lacking in comparison to the book) will remain available although I obviously encourge you to buy the book from your favourite book store :-) . As the book is under the Bruce Perens Open Book Series, it will be available 90 days after appearing on the book shelves which means it is not available right now. When it is available, it will be downloadable from http://www.phptr.com/perens so check there for more information.

To be fully clear, this webpage is not the actual book.
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Next: 10.4 Bounce Buffers Up: 10. High Memory Management Previous: 10.2 Mapping High Memory   Contents   Index

10.3 Mapping High Memory Pages Atomically

The use of kmap_atomic() is heavily discouraged but slots are reserved for each CPU for when they are necessary, such as when bounce buffers, are used by devices from interrupt. There are a varying number of different requirements an architecture has for atomic high memory mapping which are enumerated by km_type. The total number of uses is KM_TYPE_NR10.3.

KM_TYPE_NR entries per processor are reserved at boot time for atomic mapping at the location FIX_KMAP_BEGIN and ending at FIX_KMAP_END. Obviously a user of an atomic kmap may not sleep or exit before calling kunmap_atomic() as the next process on the processor may try to use the same entry and fail.

The function kmap_atomic() has the very simple task of mapping the requested page to the slot set aside in the page tables for the requested type of operation and processor. The function kunmap_atomic() is interesting as it will only clear the PTE with pte_clear() if debugging is enabled. It is considered unnecessary to bother unmapping atomic pages as the next call to kmap_atomic() will simply replace it making TLB flushes unnecessary.


There are a total of six different uses for atomic kmaps on the x86.

next up previous contents index
Next: 10.4 Bounce Buffers Up: 10. High Memory Management Previous: 10.2 Mapping High Memory   Contents   Index
Mel 2004-02-15

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