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Re: [patch 2/2] Fix loading core files without build-ids

Hi Jan,

Haven't gotten completely through the patches yet, but here is some
early feedback.

On Fri, 2013-04-26 at 20:57 +0200, Jan Kratochvil wrote: 
> With my former patches I improved some cases and regressed different cases, so
> with this patch it should behave better in general - but not in 100% cases.
> The former code using ELF headers from segments could find more modules but
> their proper address was only a luck, sometimes wrong, as proven in the mail
> above ELF.
> "Fix loading core files without build-ids" - with build-id header the ELF
> headers from segments method almost always works, it has more wrong results
> when build-ids are missing, therefore even the ELF headers are missing.

BTW. How often does it happen that build-id are missing in core files?
Is that just when a distro "misconfigures" the kernel dumping settings?
We should of course handle it correctly anyway, just wondering.

> elfutils was always fragile by searching for ELF headers in core files
> segments first
> 	/* Now sniff segment contents for modules.  */
> and only then trying to adjust them from libc link_map list.
> 	/* Next, we should follow the chain from DT_DEBUG.  */
> +
> 	/* If content-sniffing already reported a module covering
> 	   the same area, find that existing module to adjust.
> 	   The l_ld address is the only one we know for sure
> 	   to be within the module's own segments (its .dynamic).  */
> But that adjustment currently does not work as it uses
> 	Dwfl_Module *mod = INTUSE(dwfl_addrmodule) (dwfl, l_ld);
> but if the module is placed incorrectly one cannot find the proper module by
> its address -- by its placement.
> IMO one should follow link_map first and fall back to the ELF headers only if
> it fails.

Yes, that order makes sense to me.

> Not sure if one should try to map address-non-conflicting files from ELF
> headers, this patch does not do it.  (That could better fit case (2) below.)
> There are IMO two basic use cases with different pros/cons:
> (1) Map address -> symbol: eu-addr2line -S --core=xxx 0xaddress
>     Exact modules placement is needed and it is better to report no symbol
>     than a wrong symbol.


> (2) I want to know all build-ids: eu-unstrip -n --core=xxx
>     Modules placement does not matter, excessive output does not matter,
>     I need to only install needed debuginfos.

Thanks for this example. Now I finally understand why the current code
does the "sniffing". The build-ids found could be interesting, but we
don't know for sure in this case.

> The testcase had to be updated:
> (a) It was currently reporting filenames like /lib/ but those were
>     a false match, the system files do not match build-ids from the core file,
>     therefore there should be no successful match to system files.
> (b) Current code outputs [exe] and [vdso] in slightly different order.

The order shouldn't really matter, so that part of the change is fine.
But now you don't know the name at all? That is a pity since they are a
good hint. Would be nice if we could provide them in some way as hint as
you see with /proc/self/exe -> /bin/foo (deleted), or by putting them
between [brackets].

> commit e88be1bac6665f8905ef1cb6e3003267f92e912d
> Author: Jan Kratochvil <>
> Date:   Fri Apr 26 20:27:10 2013 +0200
>     Use DT_DEBUG library search first.
>     libdwfl/
>     2013-04-26  Jan Kratochvil  <>
>     	* argp-std.c (parse_opt) <ARGP_KEY_SUCCESS> <opt->core> <opt->e>: Set
>     	executable_for_core before calling dwfl_core_file_report.

This makes sense to me.

> 	* core-file.c (dwfl_core_file_report): Move raw segments reporting
>     	lower.  New variables vdso_bias, vdso_l_ld and exec_vaddr.  Call also
>     	dwfl_segment_report_module for EXEC_VADDR and VDSO_L_LD.  Call
>     	dwfl_segment_report_module for raw segments only if LISTED is zero.

Is the FIXME: Use vdso_bias. just informational, or were you going to do
that? So you don't sniff at all if dwfl_link_map_report () found
something. Would it hurt at this point to sniff? It is a pity
dwfl_segment_report_module () doesn't have documentation. I am still
staring at it to fully understand what it does. 

> 	* dwfl_module_build_id.c (check_notes): Move into
>     	__libdwfl_find_elf_build_id.
>     	(__libdwfl_find_build_id): Rename to ...
>     	(__libdwfl_find_elf_build_id): ... here.  Add parameters build_id_bits,
>     	build_id_elfaddr and build_id_len.  Verify MOD vs. ELF.
>     	(__libdwfl_find_elf_build_id) (check_notes): Remove parameters mod and
>     	set, rename data_vaddr to data_elfaddr.  Do not call found_build_id.
>     	(__libdwfl_find_elf_build_id): Update the check_notes caller, do not
>     	adjust its data_elfaddr parameter.
>     	(__libdwfl_find_build_id): New wrapper of __libdwfl_find_elf_build_id.
>         * libdwflP.h (__libdwfl_find_elf_build_id): New declaration.

OK, as written here the moving around confused me a little. But reading
the code it looks correct. Since __libdwfl_find_build_id () adds the
main bias afterwards, you don't adjusting vaddr in the other places

>     	(dwfl_link_map_report): Add parameters vdso_bias, vdso_l_ld and
>     	exec_vaddr.
>     	* link_map.c: Include system.h and fcntl.h.
>     	(report_r_debug): Add parameters vdso_bias, vdso_l_ld and exec_vaddr,
>     	describe them in the function comment.  Delete dwfl_addrmodule call and
>     	its dependent code.  Verify build-id before calling dwfl_report_elf,
>     	also supply executable_for_core to it and skip vDSO.  Report vdso_bias
>     	and vdso_l_ld when found.  Clear exec_vaddr when found.
>     	(dwfl_link_map_report): Add parameters vdso_bias, vdso_l_ld and
>     	exec_vaddr.
>     	(dwfl_link_map_report) (consider_phdr): Add parameter offset.  Set
>     	exec_vaddr when found.
>     	(dwfl_link_map_report): New variable in_ok.  Try to read IN from
>     	EXECUTABLE_FOR_CORE.  Update consider_phdr caller parameters.  Update
>     	report_r_debug caller parameters.

I still need to go through and understand the above.



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