"With 2.6.24 probably opening in the not-too-distant future, it's probably a good time to review what my plans are for when the merge window opens," began Roland Dreier on the Linux Kernel mailing list. He reflected on the recent decision to phase in usage of reviewed-by tags noting that he was a little behind on reviews, "unfortunately, due to the length of the backlog and the fact that 2.6.23 seems fairly close, some of the things listed below are going to miss the 2.6.24 merge window." Roland continued, stressing the importance of getting in-depth reviews:
"Although the plan is to phase in requiring 'Reviewed-by:' gently, for this merge, if you can get someone other than me to review your work, then the chances of it being merged increase dramatically. I'm talking about a real review -- ideally, someone independent (from another company would be good) who is willing to provide a 'Reviewed-by:' line that means the reviewer has really looked at and thought about the patch. There should be a mailing list thread you can point me at where the reviewer comments on the patch and a new version of that patch addressing all comments is posted (or in exceptional cases, where the patch is perfect to start with, where the reviewer says the patch is great)."
"The aim of these four patches is to introduce Virtual Machine time accounting," began Laurent Vivier. He described the first two patches as:
"1) As recent CPUs introduce a third running state, after 'user' and 'system', we need a new field, 'guest', in cpustat to store the time used by the CPU to run virtual CPU. Modify /proc/stat to display this new field.
"2) Like for cpustat, introduce the 'gtime' (guest time of the task) and 'cgtime' (guest time of the task children) fields for the tasks. Modify signal_struct and task_struct. Modify /proc/<pid>/stat to display these new fields."
Both Ingo Molnar and Rik van Riel responded favorably to the patch. Ingo replied, "the concept certainly looks sane to me," adding, "I'd suggest inclusion into 2.6.24." Regarding concerns that the new information at the end of the line could break utilities such as
ps, Rik assured that it would not, "we have added numbers to the cpu lines in /proc/stat since early 2.6. All the programs parsing /proc/stat should just scan for a number of numbers from the start of the line, without trying to scan for the terminating newline."
"Is anyone testing the kgdb code in here?" Andrew Morton asked in his release announcement for the 2.6.23-rc1-mm2 patchset. Mike Frysinger asked, "does kgdb actually have a chance to get merged? With the history of it, i just assumed it was never going in". In the past, Linus Torvalds has resisted merging kernel debuggers and famously said, "I don't like debuggers. Never have, probably never will," going on to explain why he didn't want it to be too easy to hack the Linux kernel. An earlier push to get kgdb merged in 2004 didn't succeed, though some architectures already have versions of the debugger. The current kgdb patchset in Andrew's tree includes code for the i386, x86_64, ppc, mips, sh and arm architectures.
Andrew replied to Mike's question, "I was hoping for a 2.6.24 merge. But I haven't actually looked at it yet. Hopefully Jason is planning to get it all out for review soonish." He went on to add, "runtime testing isn't actually the most important thing at this time - if is doesn't work, well hey, we fix it, easy - we always have bugs. The main emphasis right now should be on higher-level design/review/integration stuff." Jason Wessel noted, "the KGDB tree is broken up into incremental units each layer adding more functionality and or arch specific pieces."