[llvm-dev] FYI: proposed changes to atomic load/store in SelectionDAG

Reid Kleckner via llvm-dev llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Fri Aug 30 13:56:08 PDT 2019

I think you nailed the major concern, which is that compilers tend to have
bugs where they accidentally fold atomic or volatile loads when they

It sounds like you plan to do the audit and phase things in with a flag.
The flag gives me some confidence that downstream consumers will be able to
test this before it's turned on by default. So, if you're motivated enough
to do the audit, go for it. :)

On Wed, Aug 28, 2019 at 1:40 PM Philip Reames via llvm-dev <
llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org> wrote:

> I have a set of changes out for review which are possibly note worthy, and
> backend contributors may wish to be aware of.
> TLDR: atomic loads as normal LoadSDNodes w/an "isAtomic" flag.
> Background
> At the moment, we lower all atomic loads and stores as instances of
> AtomicSDNode (along with cmpxchg, and atomicrmw).  This requires us to
> duplicate any isel rules we wish to apply for atomic loads or stores, but
> does have the nice property  that it's harder to introduce a silent
> miscompile by adding an transform which forgets about atomicity.
> Proposed End Result
> Represent atomic loads and stores as normal LoadSDNode or StoreSDNodes.
> Analogously to volatility, provide a flag on the node (stored in the MMO)
> which indicates whether the operation is atomic.  All transforms updated to
> check isAtomic if needed.
> The advantages of this representations are:
> 1) Once the audit has been done, it makes it easier to keep atomic and
> non-atomic rules in sync.
> 2) It makes GlobalISEL easier (by eliminating the need for the special
> case).
> 3) Unify patterns flowing through other backend passes (i.e. unordered
> atomics and non-atomics shouldn't generate radically different MI
> structures)
> One open question is whether we do this just for unordered atomics, or for
> all atomics.  I'd be open to either, but would start with just unordered to
> start with either way.
> Migration Plan
> This would be done on a per-backend basis, and to start with, I'm only
> proposing to port X86.
> The basic strategy I plan on taking is:
>    1. introduce infrastructure and a flag for testing (
>    https://reviews.llvm.org/D66309)
>    2. Audit uses of isVolatile, and apply isAtomic conservatively*
>    3. piecemeal conservative* update generic code and x86 backedge code
>    in individual reviews w/tests for cases which didn't check volatile, but
>    can be found with inspection
>    4. flip the (x86) flag at the end (with minimal diffs)
>    5. Work through todo list identified in (2) and (3) exposing
>    performance ops
> (*) The "conservative" bit here is aimed at minimizing the number of diffs
> involved in (4). Ideally, there'd be none. In practice, getting it down to
> something reviewable by a human is the actual goal. Note that there are
> (currently) no paths which produce LoadSDNode or StoreSDNode with atomic
> MMOs, so we don't need to worry about preserving any behavior there.
> We've taken a very similar strategy twice before with success - once at IR
> level, and once at the MI level (post ISEL). I'll probably need some help
> with some of the ISEL patterns since that's the part I'm not familiar with.
> Thoughts?
> Philip
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