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Re: [Qemu-devel] [PATCH 2.4] hw/arm/boot: Increase fdt alignment

From: Peter Maydell
Subject: Re: [Qemu-devel] [PATCH 2.4] hw/arm/boot: Increase fdt alignment
Date: Mon, 13 Jul 2015 17:27:13 +0100

On 13 July 2015 at 17:20, Alexander Graf <address@hidden> wrote:
> On 07/13/15 18:13, Peter Maydell wrote:
>> On 13 July 2015 at 16:56, Alexander Graf <address@hidden> wrote:
>>> The Linux kernel on aarch64 creates a page table entry at early bootup
>>> that spans the 2MB range on memory spanning the fdt start address:
>>>    [ ALIGN_DOWN(fdt, 2MB) ... ALIGN_DOWN(fdt, 2MB) + 2MB ]
>>> This means that when our current 4k alignment happens to fall at the end
>>> of the aligned region, Linux tries to access memory that is not mapped.
>>> The easy fix is to instead increase the alignment to 2MB, making Linux's
>>> logic always succeed.
>> This is a kernel bug and should be fixed there. The booting
>> protocol document is pretty clear:
>> https://www.kernel.org/doc/Documentation/arm64/booting.txt
>> "The device tree blob (dtb) must be placed on an 8-byte boundary"
> While I tend to agree, we can't fix old / released kernels. So maybe we
> should just fix it in both?

Maybe. The trouble with just bumping up the alignment though is that
not all boards have so much RAM that they can trivially waste another
meg or two on alignment padding without noticing it. AArch64 boards
are probably OK but some of the old 32 bit boards are not anywhere
near as well supplied with RAM. Picking dtb alignment based on 32/64
bits might be safer.

-- PMM

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