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Based on kernel version 4.0. Page generated on 2015-04-14 21:19 EST.

1	----------------------------------------------------------------------
2	1. INTRODUCTION
3	
4	Modern filesystems feature checksumming of data and metadata to
5	protect against data corruption.  However, the detection of the
6	corruption is done at read time which could potentially be months
7	after the data was written.  At that point the original data that the
8	application tried to write is most likely lost.
9	
10	The solution is to ensure that the disk is actually storing what the
11	application meant it to.  Recent additions to both the SCSI family
12	protocols (SBC Data Integrity Field, SCC protection proposal) as well
13	as SATA/T13 (External Path Protection) try to remedy this by adding
14	support for appending integrity metadata to an I/O.  The integrity
15	metadata (or protection information in SCSI terminology) includes a
16	checksum for each sector as well as an incrementing counter that
17	ensures the individual sectors are written in the right order.  And
18	for some protection schemes also that the I/O is written to the right
19	place on disk.
20	
21	Current storage controllers and devices implement various protective
22	measures, for instance checksumming and scrubbing.  But these
23	technologies are working in their own isolated domains or at best
24	between adjacent nodes in the I/O path.  The interesting thing about
25	DIF and the other integrity extensions is that the protection format
26	is well defined and every node in the I/O path can verify the
27	integrity of the I/O and reject it if corruption is detected.  This
28	allows not only corruption prevention but also isolation of the point
29	of failure.
30	
31	----------------------------------------------------------------------
32	2. THE DATA INTEGRITY EXTENSIONS
33	
34	As written, the protocol extensions only protect the path between
35	controller and storage device.  However, many controllers actually
36	allow the operating system to interact with the integrity metadata
37	(IMD).  We have been working with several FC/SAS HBA vendors to enable
38	the protection information to be transferred to and from their
39	controllers.
40	
41	The SCSI Data Integrity Field works by appending 8 bytes of protection
42	information to each sector.  The data + integrity metadata is stored
43	in 520 byte sectors on disk.  Data + IMD are interleaved when
44	transferred between the controller and target.  The T13 proposal is
45	similar.
46	
47	Because it is highly inconvenient for operating systems to deal with
48	520 (and 4104) byte sectors, we approached several HBA vendors and
49	encouraged them to allow separation of the data and integrity metadata
50	scatter-gather lists.
51	
52	The controller will interleave the buffers on write and split them on
53	read.  This means that Linux can DMA the data buffers to and from
54	host memory without changes to the page cache.
55	
56	Also, the 16-bit CRC checksum mandated by both the SCSI and SATA specs
57	is somewhat heavy to compute in software.  Benchmarks found that
58	calculating this checksum had a significant impact on system
59	performance for a number of workloads.  Some controllers allow a
60	lighter-weight checksum to be used when interfacing with the operating
61	system.  Emulex, for instance, supports the TCP/IP checksum instead.
62	The IP checksum received from the OS is converted to the 16-bit CRC
63	when writing and vice versa.  This allows the integrity metadata to be
64	generated by Linux or the application at very low cost (comparable to
65	software RAID5).
66	
67	The IP checksum is weaker than the CRC in terms of detecting bit
68	errors.  However, the strength is really in the separation of the data
69	buffers and the integrity metadata.  These two distinct buffers must
70	match up for an I/O to complete.
71	
72	The separation of the data and integrity metadata buffers as well as
73	the choice in checksums is referred to as the Data Integrity
74	Extensions.  As these extensions are outside the scope of the protocol
75	bodies (T10, T13), Oracle and its partners are trying to standardize
76	them within the Storage Networking Industry Association.
77	
78	----------------------------------------------------------------------
79	3. KERNEL CHANGES
80	
81	The data integrity framework in Linux enables protection information
82	to be pinned to I/Os and sent to/received from controllers that
83	support it.
84	
85	The advantage to the integrity extensions in SCSI and SATA is that
86	they enable us to protect the entire path from application to storage
87	device.  However, at the same time this is also the biggest
88	disadvantage. It means that the protection information must be in a
89	format that can be understood by the disk.
90	
91	Generally Linux/POSIX applications are agnostic to the intricacies of
92	the storage devices they are accessing.  The virtual filesystem switch
93	and the block layer make things like hardware sector size and
94	transport protocols completely transparent to the application.
95	
96	However, this level of detail is required when preparing the
97	protection information to send to a disk.  Consequently, the very
98	concept of an end-to-end protection scheme is a layering violation.
99	It is completely unreasonable for an application to be aware whether
100	it is accessing a SCSI or SATA disk.
101	
102	The data integrity support implemented in Linux attempts to hide this
103	from the application.  As far as the application (and to some extent
104	the kernel) is concerned, the integrity metadata is opaque information
105	that's attached to the I/O.
106	
107	The current implementation allows the block layer to automatically
108	generate the protection information for any I/O.  Eventually the
109	intent is to move the integrity metadata calculation to userspace for
110	user data.  Metadata and other I/O that originates within the kernel
111	will still use the automatic generation interface.
112	
113	Some storage devices allow each hardware sector to be tagged with a
114	16-bit value.  The owner of this tag space is the owner of the block
115	device.  I.e. the filesystem in most cases.  The filesystem can use
116	this extra space to tag sectors as they see fit.  Because the tag
117	space is limited, the block interface allows tagging bigger chunks by
118	way of interleaving.  This way, 8*16 bits of information can be
119	attached to a typical 4KB filesystem block.
120	
121	This also means that applications such as fsck and mkfs will need
122	access to manipulate the tags from user space.  A passthrough
123	interface for this is being worked on.
124	
125	
126	----------------------------------------------------------------------
127	4. BLOCK LAYER IMPLEMENTATION DETAILS
128	
129	4.1 BIO
130	
131	The data integrity patches add a new field to struct bio when
132	CONFIG_BLK_DEV_INTEGRITY is enabled.  bio_integrity(bio) returns a
133	pointer to a struct bip which contains the bio integrity payload.
134	Essentially a bip is a trimmed down struct bio which holds a bio_vec
135	containing the integrity metadata and the required housekeeping
136	information (bvec pool, vector count, etc.)
137	
138	A kernel subsystem can enable data integrity protection on a bio by
139	calling bio_integrity_alloc(bio).  This will allocate and attach the
140	bip to the bio.
141	
142	Individual pages containing integrity metadata can subsequently be
143	attached using bio_integrity_add_page().
144	
145	bio_free() will automatically free the bip.
146	
147	
148	4.2 BLOCK DEVICE
149	
150	Because the format of the protection data is tied to the physical
151	disk, each block device has been extended with a block integrity
152	profile (struct blk_integrity).  This optional profile is registered
153	with the block layer using blk_integrity_register().
154	
155	The profile contains callback functions for generating and verifying
156	the protection data, as well as getting and setting application tags.
157	The profile also contains a few constants to aid in completing,
158	merging and splitting the integrity metadata.
159	
160	Layered block devices will need to pick a profile that's appropriate
161	for all subdevices.  blk_integrity_compare() can help with that.  DM
162	and MD linear, RAID0 and RAID1 are currently supported.  RAID4/5/6
163	will require extra work due to the application tag.
164	
165	
166	----------------------------------------------------------------------
167	5.0 BLOCK LAYER INTEGRITY API
168	
169	5.1 NORMAL FILESYSTEM
170	
171	    The normal filesystem is unaware that the underlying block device
172	    is capable of sending/receiving integrity metadata.  The IMD will
173	    be automatically generated by the block layer at submit_bio() time
174	    in case of a WRITE.  A READ request will cause the I/O integrity
175	    to be verified upon completion.
176	
177	    IMD generation and verification can be toggled using the
178	
179	      /sys/block/<bdev>/integrity/write_generate
180	
181	    and
182	
183	      /sys/block/<bdev>/integrity/read_verify
184	
185	    flags.
186	
187	
188	5.2 INTEGRITY-AWARE FILESYSTEM
189	
190	    A filesystem that is integrity-aware can prepare I/Os with IMD
191	    attached.  It can also use the application tag space if this is
192	    supported by the block device.
193	
194	
195	    int bio_integrity_prep(bio);
196	
197	      To generate IMD for WRITE and to set up buffers for READ, the
198	      filesystem must call bio_integrity_prep(bio).
199	
200	      Prior to calling this function, the bio data direction and start
201	      sector must be set, and the bio should have all data pages
202	      added.  It is up to the caller to ensure that the bio does not
203	      change while I/O is in progress.
204	
205	      bio_integrity_prep() should only be called if
206	      bio_integrity_enabled() returned 1.
207	
208	
209	5.3 PASSING EXISTING INTEGRITY METADATA
210	
211	    Filesystems that either generate their own integrity metadata or
212	    are capable of transferring IMD from user space can use the
213	    following calls:
214	
215	
216	    struct bip * bio_integrity_alloc(bio, gfp_mask, nr_pages);
217	
218	      Allocates the bio integrity payload and hangs it off of the bio.
219	      nr_pages indicate how many pages of protection data need to be
220	      stored in the integrity bio_vec list (similar to bio_alloc()).
221	
222	      The integrity payload will be freed at bio_free() time.
223	
224	
225	    int bio_integrity_add_page(bio, page, len, offset);
226	
227	      Attaches a page containing integrity metadata to an existing
228	      bio.  The bio must have an existing bip,
229	      i.e. bio_integrity_alloc() must have been called.  For a WRITE,
230	      the integrity metadata in the pages must be in a format
231	      understood by the target device with the notable exception that
232	      the sector numbers will be remapped as the request traverses the
233	      I/O stack.  This implies that the pages added using this call
234	      will be modified during I/O!  The first reference tag in the
235	      integrity metadata must have a value of bip->bip_sector.
236	
237	      Pages can be added using bio_integrity_add_page() as long as
238	      there is room in the bip bio_vec array (nr_pages).
239	
240	      Upon completion of a READ operation, the attached pages will
241	      contain the integrity metadata received from the storage device.
242	      It is up to the receiver to process them and verify data
243	      integrity upon completion.
244	
245	
246	5.4 REGISTERING A BLOCK DEVICE AS CAPABLE OF EXCHANGING INTEGRITY
247	    METADATA
248	
249	    To enable integrity exchange on a block device the gendisk must be
250	    registered as capable:
251	
252	    int blk_integrity_register(gendisk, blk_integrity);
253	
254	      The blk_integrity struct is a template and should contain the
255	      following:
256	
257	        static struct blk_integrity my_profile = {
258	            .name                   = "STANDARDSBODY-TYPE-VARIANT-CSUM",
259	            .generate_fn            = my_generate_fn,
260	       	    .verify_fn              = my_verify_fn,
261		    .tuple_size             = sizeof(struct my_tuple_size),
262		    .tag_size               = <tag bytes per hw sector>,
263	        };
264	
265	      'name' is a text string which will be visible in sysfs.  This is
266	      part of the userland API so chose it carefully and never change
267	      it.  The format is standards body-type-variant.
268	      E.g. T10-DIF-TYPE1-IP or T13-EPP-0-CRC.
269	
270	      'generate_fn' generates appropriate integrity metadata (for WRITE).
271	
272	      'verify_fn' verifies that the data buffer matches the integrity
273	      metadata.
274	
275	      'tuple_size' must be set to match the size of the integrity
276	      metadata per sector.  I.e. 8 for DIF and EPP.
277	
278	      'tag_size' must be set to identify how many bytes of tag space
279	      are available per hardware sector.  For DIF this is either 2 or
280	      0 depending on the value of the Control Mode Page ATO bit.
281	
282	----------------------------------------------------------------------
283	2007-12-24 Martin K. Petersen <martin.petersen@oracle.com>
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