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DragonFly kernel List (threaded) for 2005-02
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Re: phk malloc, was (Re: ptmalloc2)

From: Matthew Dillon <dillon@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 22 Feb 2005 21:54:33 -0800 (PST)

:Matthew Dillon wrote:
:>     program that would benefit from it.  Not one.  The answer is:  libc
:>     has no support for it because 99.9% of the programs that exist in this
:>     world have no use for it and would not benefit from it.  If you want
:I disagree with you about the benefits. If an email proxy will lose
:messages because it can't make certain memory guarantees through the OS,
:I can't use that OS with the email proxy in question.
    Nonsense.   An email proxy is not designed to use up all the machines
    resources and then gracefully back down when the machine tells it to
    stop.  Nobody in their right mind runs a high volume service without
    putting hard limit on the number of connections it serves simultaniously,
    especially not in the email world.

    All you do is tell the email service to not handle more then N (where N
    can be like 500 or 600) connections simultaniously.  That's what every
    sane sysop in the world does when they are running heavily loaded

    An overcommit knob is not going to magically make an email proxy work
    better.  You can't just let that sort of software run loose and hope
    it will work efficiently.

:In MessageWall the buffer size is user-configurable. The problem is the
:OS just won't give that physical memory to MessageWall. People don't want to
:possibly lose or delay email due to memory errors. It's just not acceptable.

    But who cares?  If you have a machine with 1GB of ram and your 
    per-connection overhead is, say, 100KB, that means you can handle 
    10,000 simultanous connections.  If you have 4GB of swap, then the
    failure condition is that the machine starts slowing down rather then
    just failing, which means that it's an EASY problem for any
    sysadmin to tune.  If you have misconfigured the program and it is 
    giving you trouble, don't blame overcommit.  Blame yourself for 
    misconfiguring the program.

    Having the OS deny memory to any application on a whim, and hoping that
    that application will actually *handle* that denial gracefully, is 
    a pipe dream.  As I said, you only see that sort of software in 
    satellites, space probes, and the space shuttle.  Oh, I suppose in an
    aircraft control system too... very bounded problems, mind you, not
    open-ended like accepting connections over the internet.  You would
    have to rewrite nearly every piece of software in existance to even 
    come close to making it operate gracefully in that sort of situation.

					Matthew Dillon 

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