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ID Date Author Topic Subjectdown
  296   19 Aug 2006 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfixes for minor mhttpd problems
I commited fix for minor mhttpd problems (rev 3314):
- for a newly created experiment, the "history" button gave the error [history
panel "" does not exist] (new problem introduced in revision 3150)
- for very long history panel names (close to the 32-character limit) history
plots produce the error "Cannot find /history/display/foo/bar/variables" (broke
in revision 3190 "use strlcpy()", in previous revisions, this bug was silent
stack corruption)
- elog attachments did not work for file names containing character plus (+)
(attachement URLs should be properly encoded to escape special CGI characters)
K.O.
  297   26 Aug 2006 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfixes for minor mhttpd problems
> I commited fix for minor mhttpd problems (rev 3314):
> - elog attachments did not work for file names containing character plus (+)
> (attachement URLs should be properly encoded to escape special CGI characters)

I accidentally indirectly learned that the above change produced incorrect URLs
when more than one experiment is defined. I now commited a fix to this problem.

K.O.
  200   25 Feb 2005 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfixed: double free in FORMAT_MIDAS ybos.c causing lazylogger crashes
We stumbled upon and fixed a "double free" bug in src/ybos.c causing crashes in
lazylogger writing .mid files in the FORMAT_MIDAS format (why does it use
ybos.c? Pierre says- for generic file i/o). Why this code had ever worked before
remains a mystery. K.O.
  739   29 Dec 2010 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Reportfixed. odb corruption, odb race condition?
> 
> The only remaining problem when running my script is some kind of deadlock between the ODB and SYSMSG semaphores...
> 


I committed changes to odb.c and midas.c fixing a number of places that could corrupt ODB and SYSMSG data, and fixing a number of deadlocks. Without these 
changes, on my Mac, MIDAS will reliably corrupt ODB or deadlock while running my odbedit fork-bomb torture test script. These changes still need to be tested on 
Linux (but I do not expect any problems).

Because my changes do not fix the original race condition in client creation/removal/cleanup, you may still occasionally see messages like this:
13:35:14 [ODBEdit24,ERROR] [odb.c:2112:db_find_key,ERROR] hkey 169592 invalid key type 376
13:35:15 [ODBEdit28,ERROR] [odb.c:3268:db_get_value,ERROR] hkey 162072 entry "Name" is of type NULL, not STRING

For now, I am happy that we no longer corrupt ODB (nor deadlock) and I will work with Stefan on a permanent solution for this.

Special thanks go to the T2K/ND280 experiment, specifically, to Tim Nicholls and to the unnamed person who emailed me their script that executes many odbedit 
commands to setup midas history plots.


svn rev 4930
K.O.


P.S. Below is my torture test script, I usually run many of them in a sequence "./test1.perl >& xxx1; ./test1.perl >& xxx2; ... etc".

#!/usr/bin/perl -w
for (my $i=0; $i<50; $i++)
{
#my $cmd = "odbedit -c \'scl -w\' &";
#my $cmd = "odbedit -c \'ls -l /system/clients\' >& xxx$i &";
my $cmd = "odbedit -c \'ls -l /system/clients\' &";
system $cmd;
}
#end

svn rev 4930
K.O.
  741   11 Feb 2011 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Reportfixed. odb corruption, odb race condition?
> > 
> > The only remaining problem when running my script is some kind of deadlock between the ODB and SYSMSG semaphores...
> > 
> 
> For now, I am happy that we no longer corrupt ODB (nor deadlock) ...
>

Found one more deadlock between ODB and SYSMSG semaphores, this time through cm_watchdog():

If cm_watchdog somehow runs while we are holding the ODB semaphore, it will eventually try to lock SYSMSG (through bm_cleanup & co) in
violation of our semaphore locking order. If at the same time another application tries to lock stuff using the correct order (SYSMSG first, ODB last),
the two programs will deadlock (wait for each other forever). I presently have two copies of gdb attached to two copies of odbedit
waiting for each other in a deadlock through this cm_watchdog scenario...

Solution shall follow quickly, I have been hunting this deadlock for the last couple of weeks...

K.O.
  743   15 Feb 2011 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Reportfixed. odb corruption, odb race condition?
> Solution shall follow quickly, I have been hunting this deadlock for the last couple of weeks...

Over the last couple of days I made a series of commits to odb.c and midas.c to implement a buffer-based cm_msg()
and fix the latest deadlock problem, also to help with the race conditions in client creation and cleanup.

My torture test runs okey in my mac now, one remaining problem is spurious client removal caused
by semaphore starvation - I see 2-3-7-10 sec wait times for semaphores - probably caused by some
kind of unfairness in the MacOS SysV semaphore implementation (in a "fair" semaphore implementation,
the process that waited the longest would be woken up the first and one would never see semaphore wait
times measured in seconds). Probably worth investigating fairness of MacOS posix semaphores. On LInux
things are probably different and under normal running conditions one should not see any semaphore starvation.

I will be doing extensive tests of this update at TRIUMF, but I do not expect any problems. If you use this
version and see any anomalies, please report them as replies to this message or email me directly.

svn rev 4976
K.O.
  750   16 Feb 2011 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Reportfixed. odb corruption, odb race condition?
> My torture test runs okey in my mac now, one remaining problem is spurious client removal caused
> by semaphore starvation...

My torture test runs okey on Linux and I do not see any problems with spurious client removal - actually
I do not see any strange longs waits for semaphores that I was seeing on MacOS. Must be another
proof that MacOS is years behind Linux in kernel technology (but parsecs ahead in user experience)

K.O.
  921   25 Oct 2013 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfixed mlogger run auto restart bug
A problem existed in midas for some time: when recording long data sets of time (or event) limited runs 
with logger run auto restart set to "yes", the runs will automatically stop and restart as expected, but 
sometimes the run will stop and never restart and beam will be lost until the experiment operator on shift 
wakes up and restarts the run manually.

I have now traced this problem to a race condition inside the mlogger - when a run is being stopped from 
the mlogger, the mlogger run transition handler (tr_stop) triggers an immediate attempt to start the next 
run, without waiting for the run-stop transition to actually complete. If the run-stop transition does not 
finish quickly enough, a safety check in start_the_run() will cause the run restart attempt to silently fail 
without any error message.

This race condition is pretty rare but somehow I managed to replicate it while debugging the 
multithreaded transitions. It is fixed by making mlogger wait until the run-stop transition completes.

https://bitbucket.org/tmidas/midas/commits/b2631fbed5f7b1ec80e8a6c8781ada0baed7702b

K.O.
  923   25 Oct 2013 Stefan RittBug Fixfixed mlogger run auto restart bug
> A problem existed in midas for some time: when recording long data sets of time (or event) limited runs 
> with logger run auto restart set to "yes", the runs will automatically stop and restart as expected, but 
> sometimes the run will stop and never restart and beam will be lost until the experiment operator on shift 
> wakes up and restarts the run manually.
> 
> I have now traced this problem to a race condition inside the mlogger - when a run is being stopped from 
> the mlogger, the mlogger run transition handler (tr_stop) triggers an immediate attempt to start the next 
> run, without waiting for the run-stop transition to actually complete. If the run-stop transition does not 
> finish quickly enough, a safety check in start_the_run() will cause the run restart attempt to silently fail 
> without any error message.
> 
> This race condition is pretty rare but somehow I managed to replicate it while debugging the 
> multithreaded transitions. It is fixed by making mlogger wait until the run-stop transition completes.
> 
> https://bitbucket.org/tmidas/midas/commits/b2631fbed5f7b1ec80e8a6c8781ada0baed7702b
> 
> K.O.

More generally I kind of consider the mlogger auto restart facility as deprecated. It works in the background and the operator does not have a clue 
what is going on. We use now the sequencer to achieve exactly the same functionality. It just requires a few lines of sequencer code:

LOOP INFINITE 
  TRANSITION start 
  WAIT events, 5000 
  TRANSITION stop 
ENDLOOP 

So the run start is only executed after the runs has been successfully stopped. You can do things in the sequencer like "stop run and sequence 
immediately" or "stop after current run has finished" which are a bit hard to do with the old method. So people should move to the sequencer.

/Stefan
  924   28 Oct 2013 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfixed mlogger run auto restart bug
> 
> More generally I kind of consider the mlogger auto restart facility as deprecated. It works in the background and the operator does not have a clue 
> what is going on. We use now the sequencer to achieve exactly the same functionality.
>

Before subruns were available, most experiments at TRIUMF have used the "auto restart" function. Now, I think most of them use subruns,
with the notable exception of PIENU where the analysis framework could not handle subruns. (PIENU is now shutdown and disassembled).

>
> It just requires a few lines of sequencer code:
> 
> LOOP INFINITE 
>   TRANSITION start 
>   WAIT events, 5000 
>   TRANSITION stop 
> ENDLOOP 
> 

Mouse click "auto restart" to "yes" is a little bit simpler than setting up a sequencer file, and it survives a crash of mhttpd.

Does the sequencer survive a crash or a restart of mhttpd?

K.O.
  925   28 Oct 2013 Stefan RittBug Fixfixed mlogger run auto restart bug
> Does the sequencer survive a crash or a restart of mhttpd?

Yes. Of course runs will not be started/stopped when mhttpd is not running, but when you restart it gracefully continues where it stopped, since all variables such as event count or current line number of 
the sequence are store in the ODB.

/Stefan
  211   05 May 2005 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfix: minor bit rot in the example experiment
I fixed some minor bit rot in the example experiment: a few minor Makefile
problems, make the analyzer use the current histogram creation macros, etc. I
also added startup and shutdown scripts. These will be documented as we work
through them with our Summer student. K.O.
  216   18 Aug 2005 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfix race condition between clients on run start/stop, pause/resume
It turns out that the new priority sequencing of run state transitions had a
flaw: the frontends, the analyzer and the logger all registered at priority 500
and were invoked in essentially a random order. For example the frontend could
get a begin-run transition before the logger and so start sending data before
the logger opened the output file. Same for the analyzer and same for the end of
run. Also the sequencing for pause/resume run and begin/end run was different
when the two pairs ought to have identical sequencing.

I now commited changes to mana.c and mlogger.c changing their transition sequencing:

start and resume:
200 - logger (mlogger.c, no change)
300 - analyzer (mana.c, was 500)
500 - frontends (mfe.c, no change)

stop and pause:
500 - frontends (mfe.c, no change)
700 - analyzer (mana.c, was 500)
800 - mlogger (mlogger.c, was 500)

P.S. However, even after this change, the TRIUMF ISAC/Dragon experiment still
see an anomaly in the analyzer, where it receives data events after the
end-of-run transition.

K.O.
  219   01 Sep 2005 Stefan RittBug Fixfix race condition between clients on run start/stop, pause/resume
> It turns out that the new priority sequencing of run state transitions had a
> flaw: the frontends, the analyzer and the logger all registered at priority 500
> and were invoked in essentially a random order. For example the frontend could
> get a begin-run transition before the logger and so start sending data before
> the logger opened the output file. Same for the analyzer and same for the end of
> run. Also the sequencing for pause/resume run and begin/end run was different
> when the two pairs ought to have identical sequencing.
> 
> I now commited changes to mana.c and mlogger.c changing their transition sequencing:
> 
> start and resume:
> 200 - logger (mlogger.c, no change)
> 300 - analyzer (mana.c, was 500)
> 500 - frontends (mfe.c, no change)
> 
> stop and pause:
> 500 - frontends (mfe.c, no change)
> 700 - analyzer (mana.c, was 500)
> 800 - mlogger (mlogger.c, was 500)
> 
> P.S. However, even after this change, the TRIUMF ISAC/Dragon experiment still
> see an anomaly in the analyzer, where it receives data events after the
> end-of-run transition.
> 
> K.O.

Thanks for fixing that bug. It happend because during the implementatoin of the priority
sequencing we have up the pre/post tansition, which took care of the proper sequence
between the logger, frontend and analyzer. The way you modified the sequence is
absolutely correct. It is important to have >10 numbers "around" the frontends (like
450...550) in case one has an experiment with >10 frontends which need to make a
transition in a certain sequence (like the DANCE experiment in Los Alamos).
  212   02 Aug 2005 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfix odb corruption when running analzer for the first time
I have been plagued by ODB corruption when I run the analyzer for the first time
after setting up the new experiment. Some time ago, I traced this to
mana.c::book_ttree() and now I found and fixed the bug, fix now commited to
midas cvs. In book_ttree(), db_find("/Analyzer/Bank switches") was returning an
error and setting hkey to zero. Then we called db_open_record() with hkey==0,
which cased ODB corruption later on. The normal db_validate_hkey() did not catch
this because it considers hkey==0 to be valid (when most likely it is not). K.O.
  671   20 Nov 2009 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfix odb corruption from too long client names
odb.c rev 4622 fixes ODB corruption by db_connect_database() if client_name is
too long. Also fixed is potential ODB corruption by too long key names in
db_create_key(). Problem kindly reported by Tim Nichols of T2K/ND280 experiment.
K.O.
  2359   22 Mar 2022 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfix for event buffer corruption in bm_flush_cache()
multithreaded frontends have an unusual event buffer corruption if the write 
cache is enabled. For a long time now I had to disable the write cache on
all multithreaded frontends in alpha-g, I was hitting this bug quite often.
(somehow I do not see this problem reported on bitbucket!)

last week I reworked the multithread locking of event buffers, in hope
that this bug will turn up, but nope, all mutexes and locking look okey,
except for a number of unrelated problems (races against bm_close_buffer()
were the most troublesome to fix).

but finally found the trouble.

first, some background.

because multiprocess locking is expensive, frontends that generate
a large number of small events can use the write cache to reduce
this overhead. instead of locking the shared memory event buffer for
each event, events are accumulated in the write cache, and periodic
calls to bm_flush_buffer() flush them to shared memory. For best effect,
one should increase the size of the write cache until lock rate is around
10/second.

it turns out introduction of multithreading broke bm_flush_cache().

it does this:

- int ask_free = pbuf->wp; // how much data we have in the write cache now
- call bm_wait_for_free_space(ask_free); // ensure we have this much free shared 
memory space
- copy pbuf->wp worth if events to shared memory

looks okey at first sight. this is what happens to trigger the bug:

- int ask_free = pbuf->wp; // ok
- call bm_wait_for_free_space(ask_free); // ok, but if shared memory is full, it 
will go to sleep waiting for free space
- in the mean time, another thread calls bm_send_event(), this adds more data to 
the write cache, moves pbuf->wp
- bm_wait_for_free_space() eventually returns
- copy pbuf->wp worth of data to shared memo KABOOM! shared memory corruption!

we just overwrote some unlucky event in shared memory: we only have "ask_free"
free bytes available, but pbuf->wp moved and now has more data,
and it does not fit, and there is no check against it.

of course in the single threaded world this bug did not exist, there was no 
other thread to call bm_send_event() while bm_flush_cache() is sleeping.

the obvious fix is to ask for more free space if cached data does not fit.

this is now implemented on the branch feature/buffer_mutex. after a bit more 
tested I will merge it into develop.

so that's it?

not so fast. there was more going on. as described, the bug will only happen
when shared memory event buffer is full. (i.e. rarely or never). It turns
out the old version of thread locking code was defective and permitted
a race between bm_send_event() and bm_send_event() in another thread:

thread 1: while (1) { bm_send_event(very small event); }
thread 2:
-> bm_send_event(very big event)
-> no space in the cache for the very big event, call bm_flush_cache()
-> bm_flush_cache() asks bm_wait_for_free_space() to make space for cached data
-> this was done with write cache mutex released (mistake!)
-> at the same time bm_send_event(very small event) added 1 more small event to 
the cache
-> back in bm_flush_cache() write cache mutex is locked correctly, we copy 
cached data to shared memory and again KABOOM because we now have more data than 
we asked free space for.

So in the original implementation, corruption was possible even when share 
memory event buffer was pretty much empty.

The reworked locking code closed that loop hole - bm_flush_cache() is now
called with write cache locked, and bm_send_event() from another thread
cannot confuse things, unless shared memory buffer is full and we go to
sleep inside bm_wait_for_free_space(). And this is now fixed, too.

K.O.
  2360   22 Mar 2022 Stefan RittBug Fixfix for event buffer corruption in bm_flush_cache()
Thanks Konstantin for your detailed description. 

I wonder why we never saw this problem at PSI. Here is the reason: In multil-threaded environments, we never call bm_send_event() directly 
from all threads (since in the old days nothing was thread safe in midas). Instead, we use a collector thread which gets all events via the 
rb_xxx functions from the individual readout threads. This is well integrated into the mfe.cxx framework. Look at examples/mtfe/mfte.cxx. 
Each thread does (simplified):

while (true) {
  do {
     status = rb_get_wp(&pevent);
  } while (status == DB_TIMEOUT)

  bm_compose_event_threadsafe(pevent, ..., &serial_number);
  bk_init32(pevent+1);
  ... fill event ...
  bk_close(pevent)

  rb_increment_wp(sizeof(EVENT_HEADER) + pevent->data_size);
}

The framework now collects all these events in receive_trigger_event() which runs in the main thread:

  for (i=0 ; i<n_thread ; i++) {
     rb_get_rp(i, pevent);
     if (pevent->serial_number == prev_serial+1)
        break;
  }
  
  prev_serial = pevent->serial_number;
  rpc_send_event(pevent);
  rb_increment_rp(sizeof(EVENT_HEADER) + pevent->data_size);

This code ensures that all events are in the right sequence (before the serial numbers where mixed up) and that all events are sent only 
from a single thread, so the write buffer can be used effectively without complicated multi-thread locks.

This solution works nicely at PSI since many years, maybe you should put some thought to use it in your tmfe framework in Alpha-g as well 
instead of struggling with all your locks.

Stefan
  2361   23 Mar 2022 Ivo SchulthessBug Fixfix for event buffer corruption in bm_flush_cache()
Thanks for the investigation. Back in 2020, we had some issues of losing data between the system buffer and the logger writing them to disk (https://daq00.triumf.ca/elog-midas/Midas/1966). This was polled equipment but we had a multithreaded FE running at the same time. Could this be related to the same problem?

Best, Ivo
  2363   23 Mar 2022 Konstantin OlchanskiBug Fixfix for event buffer corruption in bm_flush_cache()
I confirm, there is no problem in single-threaded programs, and
there is no problem if all bm_send_event() and bm_flush_cache() are called
from the same thread.

> ... instead of struggling with all your locks.

it is better to have midas fully thread safe. ODB has been so for a long time,
event buffer partially (except for this bug), now fully.

without that the problem still exists, because in many frontends,
bm_flush_buffer() is called from the main thread, and will race
against the "bm_send_event() thread". Of course you can do
everything on the main thread, but this opens you to RPC timeouts
during run transitions (if you sleep in bm_wait_for_free_space()).

also the SYSMSG buffer is subject to the same bug. cm_msg() is of course
safe to call from anywhere, but cm_msg_flush_buffer() and cm_periodic_tasks()
can be called from any thread, and they issue bm_send_event(SYSMSG),
and there will be mysterious crashes and SYSMSG corruptions, probably
only during message storms, but still!

K.O.
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