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SubjectRe: A true story of a crash.
(Note, I've removed from the cc, because for the moment chances are this
thread does not intrest him greatly)

On Fri, 14 Aug 1998, Theodore Y. Ts'o wrote:

<snip>
> There's only one problem with this strategy --- which was originally
> used by AIX, by the way. If the largest process happens to be the X
> server, and the reason why you're out of memory was because you have
> lots and lots of (smaller) X programs running, the kernel will kill off
> the X server, which will keep the system up and free lots of memory
> (since not only will the X server exit, but all of the X client
> applications will die too!).
>
> However, users might not find that to be the most reasonable behaviour,
> since they might lose a lot of work, and the server clearly killed many
> more processes than it needed to.

Actualy as the X server currently runs as root (save for the FB model) it
should be exempt from this..

<snip>
> The other strategy which probably works better is to kill off the
> process which tried asking for memory when the kernel had trouble
> servicing its request.

Not alweys what you want to do, see below..

> This has the advantage that you avoid killing the long-term, stable
> processes that aren't requested new pages, even if they've are pretty
> big. Like your solution, it's an attempt to try to kill off the
> out-of-control process, while avoiding the "benign" processes.

Except this keeps you from doing things like running kill or ps in a
attempt to gain control, sure the system may stay running, but in a fork
attack chances are you won't be allocating new memory on existing
processes, and without being able to spawn new processes you still won't
beable to recover nicely.. :/

Zephaniah E, Hull..

>
> - Ted
>
> -
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