[SeaBIOS] [Xen-devel] Ideas for PV on SeaBIOS

Juergen Gross juergen.gross at ts.fujitsu.com
Thu May 19 10:17:17 CEST 2011

On 05/19/11 10:08, Jan Beulich wrote:
>>>> On 19.05.11 at 07:33, Daniel Castro<evil.dani at gmail.com>  wrote:
>> In order to give PV Drivers to SeaBIOS we will need to solve a few
>> problems, one is the following:
>> Does a booting kernel informs the BIOS that it will leave real mode
>> and not use it again? When the booting kernel uses CPU real mode for
>> the last time, how can we (Xen or SeaBIOS) know that real mode will no
>> longer be used, and hence BIOS calls will not be issued?
>> We want upon last real mode usage to leave all Xen PV information in a
>> clean state, this means, closing the channel and ring between the
>> newly created domain and the host system.
> How can you be certain an OS won't switch back to real mode even
> after an extended period of up-time? Or that such switching back
> would affect you (could be calling e.g. the video or PCI BIOS
> functions only).
> There is INT15 AX=EC00 with BX specifying the target operating
> mode, but that's apparently being called only before entering
> long mode (i.e. wouldn't cover 32-bit OSes). And it would neither
> be a guarantee that the OS might not later return to real mode.

Wouldn't it be possible for the BIOS to reestablish the connection to Xen
in this case? This might be the best solution: close the channel and ring
at some specific event (might even be timer based) and open them again
if really needed.


Juergen Gross                 Principal Developer Operating Systems
TSP ES&S SWE OS6                       Telephone: +49 (0) 89 3222 2967
Fujitsu Technology Solutions              e-mail: juergen.gross at ts.fujitsu.com
Domagkstr. 28                           Internet: ts.fujitsu.com
D-80807 Muenchen                 Company details: ts.fujitsu.com/imprint.html

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