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Re: [PATCH 0/2] Multiarch hooks for memcpy variants

Zack Weinberg wrote:
> On Fri, Aug 11, 2017 at 2:53 PM, Siddhesh Poyarekar <> wrote:
> > On Friday 11 August 2017 11:36 PM, Zack Weinberg wrote:
>>>> may be the generic __memcpy_chk should call the ifunced
>>>> memcpy so it goes through an extra plt indirection, but
>>>> at least less target specific code is needed.
>>> I was thinking of making this suggestion myself.  I think that would
>>> be a better maintainability/efficiency tradeoff.  (Of course, I also
>>> think we shouldn't bypass ifuncs for intra-libc calls.)
>> That was my initial approach, but I was under the impression that PLTs
>> in internal calls were frowned upon, hence the ifuncs similar to what's
>> done in x86.  If this is acceptable, I could do more tests to check
>> gains within the library if we were to call memcpy via ifunc.
> There's been a bunch of inconclusive arguments about this in the past.
> If you have the time and the resources to do some thorough testing and
> properly resolve the question, that would be really great.

I don't believe you can resolve this generally, it's highly dependent on the details.
If the generic implementation is very efficient, the possible gain of specialized
ifuncs may be so low that it can never offset the overhead of an ifunc. Also note
that you're always slowing down the generic case, so if that version is used in
many cases, an ifunc wouldn't make sense.

I haven't looked in detail at memcpy use in GLIBC, however if the statistics are
similar to typical use I measured then it makes no sense to use ifuncs. Large
copies can benefit from special tweaks, and in that case the overhead of an ifunc
would be much smaller (both relatively and absolutely due to lower frequency), so
that's where an ifunc might be useful.


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