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[bug, bisected] pfifo_fast causes packet reordering




During stress-testing our "ucan" USB/CAN adapter SocketCAN driver on Linux v4.16-rc4-383-ged58d66f60b3 we observed that a small fraction of packets are delivered out-of-order.

We have tracked the problem down to the driver interface level, and it seems that the driver's net_device_ops.ndo_start_xmit() function gets the packets handed over in the wrong order.

This behavior was not observed on Linux v4.15 and I have bisected the problem down to this patch:

commit c5ad119fb6c09b0297446be05bd66602fa564758
Author: John Fastabend <john.fastabend@xxxxxxxxx>
Date:   Thu Dec 7 09:58:19 2017 -0800

   net: sched: pfifo_fast use skb_array

   This converts the pfifo_fast qdisc to use the skb_array data structure
   and set the lockless qdisc bit. pfifo_fast is the first qdisc to support
   the lockless bit that can be a child of a qdisc requiring locking. So
   we add logic to clear the lock bit on initialization in these cases when
   the qdisc graft operation occurs.

   This also removes the logic used to pick the next band to dequeue from
   and instead just checks a per priority array for packets from top priority
   to lowest. This might need to be a bit more clever but seems to work
   for now.

   Signed-off-by: John Fastabend <john.fastabend@xxxxxxxxx>
   Signed-off-by: David S. Miller <davem@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>

The patch does not revert cleanly, but moving to one commit earlier makes the problem go away.

Selecting the "fq" scheduler instead of "pfifo_fast" makes the problem go away as well.

Is this an unintended side-effect of the patch or is there something the driver has to do to request in-order delivery?

Thanks,
Jakob