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MI_SWITCH(9) Kernel Developer's Manual MI_SWITCH(9)

mi_switch, cpu_switchtoswitch to another process context

#include <sys/param.h>
#include <sys/proc.h>


cpu_switchto(struct proc *old, struct proc *new);

The () function implements the machine-independent prelude to a process context switch. It is called from only a few distinguished places in the kernel code as a result of the principle of non-preemptable kernel mode execution. The three major uses of mi_switch() can be enumerated as follows:

  1. From within tsleep(9) when the current process voluntarily relinquishes the CPU to wait for some resource to become available.
  2. After handling a trap (e.g., a system call or device interrupt) when the kernel prepares a return to user-mode execution. This case is typically handled by machine-dependent trap-handling code after detection of a change in the signal disposition of the current process, or when a higher priority process might be available to run. The latter event is communicated by the machine-independent scheduling routines by calling the machine-dependent (void).
  3. In the signal handling code (see issignal(9)) if a signal is delivered that causes a process to stop.

() records the amount of time the current process has been running in the process structure and checks this value against the CPU time limits allocated to the process (see getrlimit(2)). Exceeding the soft limit results in a SIGXCPU signal to be posted to the process, while exceeding the hard limit will cause a SIGKILL. For a process which accumulated longer than 10 minutes of CPU time, its nice level is raised to 4. After these administrative tasks are done, mi_switch() chooses the next process to run and hands over control to the machine dependent routine cpu_switchto(), which will perform the actual process context switch.

() will save the context of the old process and switch to the new one. A special case is when the old process is NULL which means that the old process has exited and doesn't need to be saved.

Note that () and thus cpu_switchto() should be called at splhigh(9).

spl(9), tsleep(9), wakeup(9)

June 4, 2013 OpenBSD-5.5