warning: inlining failed

Bruce Evans bde at zeta.org.au
Fri Jul 18 20:35:01 PDT 2003

On Fri, 18 Jul 2003, Jacques A. Vidrine wrote:

> On Fri, Jul 18, 2003 at 12:18:14PM -0700, Nate Lawson wrote:
> > Warner mentioned this was due to the gcc import.  Nearly every part of the
> > kernel that uses newbus or buf.h prints out lots of warnings.  Can someone
> > see about fixing this, whether it's by fixing our headers or build flags
> > or gcc itself?  I've already wasted a few reboot cycles because valid
> > warnings were lost in the crowd.
> >
> > cc -O -pipe -mcpu=pentiumpro  -D_KERNEL -Wall -Wredundant-decls -Wnested-externs -Wstrict-prototypes  -Wmissing-prototypes -Wpointer-arith -Winline -Wcast-qual  -fformat-extensions -std=c99 -DKLD_MODULE -nostdinc -I-   -I. -I@ -I@/dev -I@/../include -I/usr/include -fno-common  -mno-align-long-strings -mpreferred-stack-boundary=2 -ffreestanding -Wall -Wredundant-decls -Wnested-externs -Wstrict-prototypes  -Wmissing-prototypes -Wpointer-arith -Winline -Wcast-qual  -fformat-extensions -std=c99 -c
> > /home/src/sys/modules/ext2fs/../../gnu/ext2fs/ext2_vfsops.c
> > /home/src/sys/gnu/ext2fs/ext2_vfsops.c: In function `compute_sb_data':
> > @/sys/buf.h:281: warning: inlining failed in call to `BUF_LOCK'
> > /home/src/sys/gnu/ext2fs/ext2_vfsops.c:496: warning: called from here
> ...
> Does `-finline-limit=1200' (or bigger) help?

Maybe.  It allows larger declared-inline functions to actually be inlined
of course.  This probably helps performance negatively in the case of
large functions like BUF_LOCK.

> I think GCC 3.3 added a warning for when inline functions generated `a
> lot' of instructions.  In such a case, the function is not inlined.  I
> believe this also happened with GCC 3.2, but it just didn't normally
> tell you about it.

A warning (-Winline) about gcc not inlining a function because the
function involves "a lot" of instructions has existed for ages, and
FreeBSD has used it since since I reenabled it in 1997 in rev.1.6 of
bsd.kern.mk, but it was apparently broken in at least gcc-3.[1-2].
The main differences between gcc-3.2 and gcc-3.3 in this area seem to
be just that the warning actually works in gcc-3.3, and gcc-3.3 has
more options for quantifying "a lot" than anyone would want to know

Since gcc now warns when it should, and successful inlining of all
inline functions in FreeBSD was apparently broken in gcc-3.1, gcc-3.3
now emits hundreds or thousands of warnings about functions that it
can't inline.  -Wunline was supposed to let us fix bogus inlining
incrementatally, but this was defeated by it not working in gcc-3.[1-2].

E.g., according to my kernel backups, non-inlining of BUF_LOCK started
with gcc-3.1.  Some relevant history:

1996/06/26: BUF_LOCK implemented (as an inline) in buf.h rev.1.71
2002/05/09: kernel built on this date by gcc-2.95.4 (20020320) has no
            static copies of BUF_LOCK
2002/06/29: kernel built on this date by gcc-3.1 (20020529) has 11
            static copies of BUF_LOCK

The new options for controlling inlining are:

--param max-inline-insns=<value>
--param max-inline-insns-single=<value>
--param max-inline-insns-auto=<value>
--param min-inline-insns=<value>
--param max-inline-insns-rtl=<value>

See gcc.info for details.

I couldn't find a setting that I liked.  Most things compile with
--param max-inline-insns-single=1600, which sort of corresponds to
-finline-linit=3200 (more than 5 times larger than the default).
A few files need amazingly larger values.  Compiling with values
smaller than the default unconvered interesting bugs in the source
code (invalid asm and an unitiialized variable).  What I want is
for leaf functions declared as inline to always be inlined unless
they are larger than some limit, but the gcc controls are mainly for
for limiting the size of non-leaf functions.  Apparently-small
functions can become amazingly large due to nested inllining.  This
gives inlining failures which are not entirely the fault of bloat in
the inline functions.  E.g., the following trick (which is used a lot
in subr_mbuf.c and kern_descrip.c) doesn't actually give inline functions:

static inline int
bigfunc(int foo, int flags)
	/* Large code. */
	return (resultoflargecode);

static int
smallfunc1(int foo)
	return (bigfunc(foo, 1));

static int
smallfunc2(int foo)
	return (bigfunc(foo, 2));

static int
smallfunc3(int foo)
	return (bigfunc(foo, 3));

This trick is used mainly to avoid repeating the relevant parts of
bigfunc() at the source level.  Repeating them at the object level is
wanted and expected to do more than just avoid a function call since
large sections of code can be optimized away when `flags' has a constant
value.  But gcc-3 doesn't like this trick since it gives large code
to inline.  The effectivness of the desired inlining (or lack thereof)
is apparently null.  No one noticed when the inlining stopped with
gcc-3.1 14 months ago.  (I checked that the interesting inlining of
mb_alloc() was done on 2002/05/09 but not on 2002/06/29.)


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