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    SubjectRe: [RFC 3/5] sched: Add CPU rate hard caps
    On Fri, Jun 02, 2006 at 04:23:04AM -0700, Matt Helsley wrote:
    > There are two problems as I see it:
    > 1) If X1 grows to use 35% then X2's usage can't grow back from 15% until
    > X1 relents. This is seems unpleasantly like cooperative scheduling
    > within group X because if we take this to its limit X2 gets 0% and X1
    > gets 50% -- effectively starving X2. What little I know about nice
    > suggests this wouldn't really happen. However I think may highlight one
    > case where fiddling with nice can't effectively control CPU usage.

    I would expect task Z to adjust the limits of X1, X2 again when it notices
    that X2 is "hungry". Until Z gets around to do that, what situation you
    describe will be true. If Z is configured to run quite frequently (every
    5 seconds?) to monitor/adjust limits, then this starvation (of X2) may be
    avoided for longer periods?

    > 2) Suppose we add group Y with tasks Y1-YM, Y's CPU usage is limited to
    > 49%, each task of Y uses its limit of (M/49)% CPU, and the remaining 1%
    > is left for Z (i.e. the single CPU is being used heavily). Z must use
    > this 1% to read accounting information and adjust nice values as
    > described above. If X1 spawns X3 we're likely in trouble -- Z might not
    > get to run for a while but X3 has inheritted X1's nice value. If we
    > return to our initial assumption that X1 and X2 are each using their
    > limit of 25% then X3 will get limited to 25% too. The sum of Xi can now
    > exceed 50% until Z is scheduled next. This only gets worse if there is
    > an imbalance between X1 and X2 as described earlier. In that case group
    > X could use 100% CPU until Z is scheduled! It also probably gets worse
    > as load increases and the number of scheduling opportunities for Z
    > decrease.
    > I don't see how task Z could solve the second problem. As with UP, in
    > SMP I think it depends on when Z (or one Z fixed to each CPU) is
    > scheduled.

    Wouldn't it help if Z is made to run with nice -20 (or with RT prio maybe),
    so that when Z wants to run (every 5 or 10 seconds) it is run
    immediately? This is assuming that Z can do its job of adjusting limits
    for all tasks "quickly" (maybe 100-200 ms?).

    > I think these are simple scenarios that demonstrate the problem with
    > splitting resource management into accounting and control with userspace
    > in between.
    > Cheers,
    > -Matt Helsley

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