Microsoft Interrupt-Affinity Filter Tool (CPU affinity)

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Microsoft Interrupt-Affinity Filter Tool (CPU affinity)

PostPosted by JH2k » Thu Jul 08, 2010 6:00 pm

As I haven't given up on HT (HyperThreading) and multi-core annoyances. I started to search for a solution to one of the latest problems given by applications that doesn't have good performance, or even crashes, when are running on multi-core or multi-logic cpu systems.

The last time I talked about this behavior here, I talked about Kerio Personal Firewall 2.1.5 driver issues.

The main problem of this issue, is that you can't assign a driver to have affinity with an specific core, then, even if you try to attach the affinity of the engine with utilities as PrioAff, the driver is still using the multi-core or HT, so it stills has the potential BSODs/crash behavior.

So, after having some searches here and there, and even if it doesn't solve my problem, it's interesting to bring to the community this utility by Microsoft: the Interrupt-Affnity Filter Tool.

What this utility (or driver) does, it is to place itself in the middle of a physical device (this is very important, it only affects to devices using Interrupts), assign an affinity to a core via it's configuration program and force any lower driver, requesting interrupts (IRQs), to attach to that previously configured core.

After this, potential crashes, issues and performance lacks could be solved, at least for the first driver (the device driver) which requests interrupts (IRQ).

And as I said, I don't know if this could solve my problem because, theoretically any lower driver using a device will attach to a core, but as a Firewall driver is not directly attached but to the TCP stack, and this one to the device driver... I don't know how it would behave, without forgetting that a firewall driver works in a kernel driver mode... If works (this needs lots of time before a BSOD) I'll tell some day.

But, anyway, beyond this, I think this could be useful to manage resources on a multi-core (or HT) system as it is the main intention of such utility.

Read carefully the Microsoft KB link provided, but, overall, the txt files in the zip file of the utility to fully understand how it works.
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Re: Microsoft Interrupt-Affinity Filter Tool (CPU affinity)

PostPosted by JH2k » Fri Jul 09, 2010 8:08 pm

Sooner than expected, didn't work, so attach a device interrupts for an specific core, hasn't sense in my particular case.

But, anyway, as I said here, this is a good utility to manage resources and balance them across cores in a multi-core processor.
Posts: 140
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2008 9:23 pm

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