Skip site navigation (1)Skip section navigation (2)

FreeBSD Manual Pages


home | help
KHELP(9)		 BSD Kernel Developer's	Manual		      KHELP(9)

     khelp, khelp_init_osd, khelp_destroy_osd, khelp_get_id, khelp_get_osd,
     khelp_add_hhook, khelp_remove_hhook, KHELP_DECLARE_MOD,
     KHELP_DECLARE_MOD_UMA -- Kernel Helper Framework

     #include <sys/khelp.h>
     #include <sys/module_khelp.h>

     int khelp_init_osd(uint32_t classes, struct osd *hosd);

     int khelp_destroy_osd(struct osd *hosd);

     int32_t khelp_get_id(char *hname);

     void * khelp_get_osd(struct osd *hosd, int32_t id);

     int khelp_add_hhook(struct	hookinfo *hki, uint32_t	flags);

     int khelp_remove_hhook(struct hookinfo *hki);

     KHELP_DECLARE_MOD(hname, hdata, hhooks, version);

     KHELP_DECLARE_MOD_UMA(hname, hdata, hhooks, version, ctor,	dtor);

     khelp provides a framework	for managing khelp modules, which indirectly
     use the hhook(9) KPI to register their hook functions with	hook points of
     interest within the kernel.  Khelp	modules	aim to provide a structured
     way to dynamically	extend the kernel at runtime in	an ABI preserving man-
     ner.  Depending on	the subsystem providing	hook points, a khelp module
     may be able to associate per-object data for maintaining relevant state
     between hook calls.  The hhook(9) and khelp frameworks are	tightly	inte-
     grated and	anyone interested in khelp should also read the	hhook(9) man-
     ual page thoroughly.

   Information for Khelp Module	Implementors
     khelp modules are represented within the khelp framework by a struct
     helper which has the following members:

	   struct helper {
		   int (*mod_init) (void);
		   int (*mod_destroy) (void);
	   #define HELPER_NAME_MAXLEN 16
		   char			   h_name[HELPER_NAME_MAXLEN];
		   uma_zone_t		   h_zone;
		   struct hookinfo	   *h_hooks;
		   uint32_t		   h_nhooks;
		   uint32_t		   h_classes;
		   int32_t		   h_id;
		   volatile uint32_t	   h_refcount;
		   uint16_t		   h_flags;
		   TAILQ_ENTRY(helper)	   h_next;

     Modules must instantiate a	struct helper, but are only required to	set
     the h_classes field, and may optionally set the h_flags, mod_init and
     mod_destroy fields	where required.	 The framework takes care of all other
     fields and	modules	should refrain from manipulating them.	Using the C99
     designated	initialiser feature to set fields is encouraged.

     If	specified, the mod_init	function will be run by	the khelp framework
     prior to completing the registration process.  Returning a	non-zero value
     from the mod_init function	will abort the registration process and	fail
     to	load the module.  If specified,	the mod_destroy	function will be run
     by	the khelp framework during the deregistration process, after the mod-
     ule has been deregistered by the khelp framework.	The return value is
     currently ignored.	 Valid khelp classes are defined in <sys/khelp.h>.
     Valid flags are defined in	<sys/module_khelp.h>.  The HELPER_NEEDS_OSD
     flag should be set	in the h_flags field if	the khelp module requires per-
     sistent per-object	data storage.  There is	no programmatic	way (yet) to
     check if a	khelp class provides the ability for khelp modules to asso-
     ciate persistent per-object data, so a manual check is required.

     The KHELP_DECLARE_MOD() and KHELP_DECLARE_MOD_UMA() macros	provide	conve-
     nient wrappers around the DECLARE_MODULE(9) macro,	and are	used to	regis-
     ter a khelp module	with the khelp framework.  KHELP_DECLARE_MOD_UMA()
     should only be used by modules which require the use of persistent	per-
     object storage i.e. modules which set the HELPER_NEEDS_OSD	flag in	their
     struct helper's h_flags field.

     The first four arguments common to	both macros are	as follows.  The hname
     argument specifies	the unique ascii(7) name for the khelp module.	It
     should be no longer than HELPER_NAME_MAXLEN-1 characters in length.  The
     hdata argument is a pointer to the	module's struct	helper.	 The hhooks
     argument points to	a static array of struct hookinfo structures.  The ar-
     ray should	contain	a struct hookinfo for each hhook(9) point the module
     wishes to hook, even when using the same hook function multiple times for
     different hhook(9)	points.	 The version argument specifies	a version num-
     ber for the module	which will be passed to	MODULE_VERSION(9).  The
     KHELP_DECLARE_MOD_UMA() macro takes the additional	ctor and dtor argu-
     ments, which specify optional uma(9) constructor and destructor func-
     tions.  NULL should be passed where the functionality is not required.

     The khelp_get_id()	function returns the numeric identifier	for the	khelp
     module with name hname.

     The khelp_get_osd() function is used to obtain the	per-object data
     pointer for a specified khelp module.  The	hosd argument is a pointer to
     the underlying subsystem object's struct osd.  This is provided by	the
     hhook(9) framework	when calling into a khelp module's hook	function.  The
     id	argument specifies the numeric identifier for the khelp	module to ex-
     tract the data pointer from hosd for.  The	id is obtained using the
     khelp_get_id() function.

     The khelp_add_hhook() and khelp_remove_hhook() functions allow a khelp
     module to dynamically hook/unhook hhook(9)	points at run time.  The hki
     argument specifies	a pointer to a struct hookinfo which encapsulates the
     required information about	the hhook(9) point and hook function being ma-
     nipulated.	 The HHOOK_WAITOK flag may be passed in	via the	flags argument
     of	khelp_add_hhook() if malloc(9) is allowed to sleep waiting for memory
     to	become available.

   Integrating Khelp Into a Kernel Subsystem
     Most of the work required to allow	khelp modules to do useful things re-
     lates to defining and instantiating suitable hhook(9) points for khelp
     modules to	hook into.  The	only additional	decision a subsystem needs to
     make is whether it	wants to allow khelp modules to	associate persistent
     per-object	data.  Providing support for persistent	data storage can allow
     khelp modules to perform more complex functionality which may be desir-
     able.  Subsystems which want to allow Khelp modules to associate persis-
     tent per-object data with one of the subsystem's data structures need to
     make the following	two key	changes:

     +o	 Embed a struct	osd pointer in the structure definition	for the	ob-

     +o	 Add calls to khelp_init_osd() and khelp_destroy_osd() to the subsys-
	 tem code paths	which are responsible for respectively initialising
	 and destroying	the object.

     The khelp_init_osd() function initialises the per-object data storage for
     all currently loaded khelp	modules	of appropriate classes which have set
     the HELPER_NEEDS_OSD flag in their	h_flags	field.	The classes argument
     specifies a bitmask of khelp classes which	this subsystem associates
     with.  If a khelp module matches any of the classes in the	bitmask, that
     module will be associated with the	object.	 The hosd argument specifies
     the pointer to the	object's struct	osd which will be used to provide the
     persistent	storage	for use	by khelp modules.

     The khelp_destroy_osd() function frees all	memory that was	associated
     with an object's struct osd by a previous call to khelp_init_osd().  The
     hosd argument specifies the pointer to the	object's struct	osd which will
     be	purged in preparation for destruction.

     khelp modules are protected from being prematurely	unloaded by a refer-
     ence count.  The count is incremented each	time a subsystem calls
     khelp_init_osd() causing persistent storage to be allocated for the mod-
     ule, and decremented for each corresponding call to khelp_destroy_osd().
     Only when a module's reference count has dropped to zero can the module
     be	unloaded.

     The khelp_init_osd() function returns zero	if no errors occurred.	It re-
     turns ENOMEM if a khelp module which requires per-object storage fails to
     allocate the necessary memory.

     The khelp_destroy_osd() function only returns zero	to indicate that no
     errors occurred.

     The khelp_get_id()	function returns the unique numeric identifier for the
     registered	khelp module with name hname.  It return -1 if no module with
     the specified name	is currently registered.

     The khelp_get_osd() function returns the pointer to the khelp module's
     persistent	object storage memory.	If the module identified by id does
     not have persistent object	storage	registered with	the object's hosd
     struct osd, NULL is returned.

     The khelp_add_hhook() function returns zero if no errors occurred.	 It
     returns ENOENT if it could	not find the requested hhook(9)	point.	It re-
     turns ENOMEM if malloc(9) failed to allocate memory.  It returns EEXIST
     if	attempting to register the same	hook function more than	once for the
     same hhook(9) point.

     The khelp_remove_hhook() function returns zero if no errors occurred.  It
     returns ENOENT if it could	not find the requested hhook(9)	point.

     A well commented example Khelp module can be found	at:

     The Enhanced Round	Trip Time (ERTT) h_ertt(4) khelp module	provides a
     more complex example of what is possible.

     h_ertt(4),	hhook(9), osd(9)

     Development and testing of	this software were made	possible in part by
     grants from the FreeBSD Foundation	and Cisco University Research Program
     Fund at Community Foundation Silicon Valley.

     The khelp kernel helper framework first appeared in FreeBSD 9.0.

     The khelp framework was first released in 2010 by Lawrence	Stewart	whilst
     studying at Swinburne University of Technology's Centre for Advanced In-
     ternet Architectures, Melbourne, Australia.  More details are available

     The khelp framework was written by	Lawrence Stewart

     This manual page was written by David Hayes <>	and
     Lawrence Stewart <>.

BSD			       February	15, 2011			   BSD


Want to link to this manual page? Use this URL:

home | help