[PATCH][usercr]: Ghost tasks must be detached

Sukadev Bhattiprolu sukadev at linux.vnet.ibm.com
Wed Feb 16 12:10:20 PST 2011

Oren Laadan [orenl at cs.columbia.edu] wrote:
| So instead, we can call __wake_up_parent() from exit_checkpoint()
| if indeed we are already reaped there:
| exit_checkpoint()
| {
| 	...
| 	if (current->flags & PF_RESTARTING) {
| 		...
| 		/* either zombie or reaped ghost/dead */
| 		if (current->exit_state = EXIT_DEAD)
| 			__wake_up_parent(...);	  /* probably need lock */
| 		...
| 	}
| 	...
| }
| and to avoid userspace misuse, disallow non-thread-group-leader ghosts.
| ?

Well, I don't see a problem as such, but notice one inconsistency.

By the time the ghost task calls exit_checkpoint() it would have
gone through release_task()/__exit_signal()/__unhash_process() so
it is no longer on the parent's ->children list. We will be accessing
the task's ->parent pointer after this.

I am looking to see if anything prevents the parent from itself going
through release_task(), after the child does the release_task() but before
the child does the exit_checkpoint().

In 2.6.38, I don't see specifically where a task's ->parent pointer is
invalidated.  The task->parent and task->parent->signal are freed in the
final __put_task_struct(). So its probably safe to access them, even if the
parent itself is exiting and has gone through release_task().

But in 2.6.32 i.e RHEL5, tsk->signal is set to NULL in __exit_signal().
So, I am trying to rule out the following scenario:

	Child (may not be a ghost)			Parent
	-------------------------                       ------
- exit_notify(): is EXIT_DEAD 
- release_task():
	 - drops task_list_lock
	 					- itself proceeds to exit.
						- enters release_task()
						- sets own->signal = NULL
						  (in 2.6.32, __exit_signal())

- enters exit_checkpoint()
- __wake_up_parent()
	access parents->signal NULL ptr

Not sure if holding task_list_lock here is needed or will help.


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