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In complicated DMA pipelines such as graphics (multimedia, camera, gpu, display)
a consumer of a buffer needs to know when the producer has finished producing
it. Likewise the producer needs to know when the consumer is finished with the
buffer so it can reuse it. A particular buffer may be consumed by multiple
consumers which will retain the buffer for different amounts of time. In
addition, a consumer may consume multiple buffers atomically.
The sync framework adds an API which allows synchronization between the
producers and consumers in a generic way while also allowing platforms which
have shared hardware synchronization primitives to exploit them.
* provide a generic API for expressing synchronization dependencies
* allow drivers to exploit hardware synchronization between hardware
* provide a userspace API that allows a compositor to manage
* provide rich telemetry data to allow debugging slowdowns and stalls of
the graphics pipeline.
* sync_timeline
* sync_pt
* sync_fence
A sync_timeline is an abstract monotonically increasing counter. In general,
each driver/hardware block context will have one of these. They can be backed
by the appropriate hardware or rely on the generic sw_sync implementation.
Timelines are only ever created through their specific implementations
(i.e. sw_sync.)
A sync_pt is an abstract value which marks a point on a sync_timeline. Sync_pts
have a single timeline parent. They have 3 states: active, signaled, and error.
They start in active state and transition, once, to either signaled (when the
timeline counter advances beyond the sync_pts value) or error state.
Sync_fences are the primary primitives used by drivers to coordinate
synchronization of their buffers. They are a collection of sync_pts which may
or may not have the same timeline parent. A sync_pt can only exist in one fence
and the fence's list of sync_pts is immutable once created. Fences can be
waited on synchronously or asynchronously. Two fences can also be merged to
create a third fence containing a copy of the two fences’ sync_pts. Fences are
backed by file descriptors to allow userspace to coordinate the display pipeline
A driver implementing sync support should have a work submission function which:
* takes a fence argument specifying when to begin work
* asynchronously queues that work to kick off when the fence is signaled
* returns a fence to indicate when its work will be done.
* signals the returned fence once the work is completed.
Consider an imaginary display driver that has the following API:
* assumes buf is ready to be displayed.
* blocks until the buffer is on screen.
void display_buffer(struct dma_buf *buf);
The new API will become:
* will display buf when fence is signaled.
* returns immediately with a fence that will signal when buf
* is no longer displayed.
struct sync_fence* display_buffer(struct dma_buf *buf,
struct sync_fence *fence);