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SubjectRe: Out of memory?
When you're out of memory, you're out of memory.

The kernel can't magically make more. Bumpers on cars are designed to limit
damage at tiny speeds but they don't do much good when you're doing 90.

The kernel is doing it's best to give you what it can, if you willingly take
all the memory, it's gotta struggle. Improperly written programs will
segfault and crash when they run out of memory.

The kernel does try to kill off programs when it runs out of memory but
unless it picks the memory pig, then that program will probably immediately
grab any memory the kernel just freed.


Alexander Valys wrote:

> I just experienced a strange situation on my slackware 7.1, kernel
> 2.2.16 box. I was compiling windowmaker on VT1, and experimenting with
> a prime number generation tool on VT2. I tried to open a 26mb file with
> pico, but because it was so large pico took a while to open it,
> displaying reading file on the bottom of the screen. I switched back to
> VT1, and noticed that the build had slowed to a crawl. Puzzled, I sat
> back and waited. After about 30 seconds, make crashed with an out of
> memory error. I typed at the command line "clear" to clear the screen,
> but it complained about not being able to map memory pages to open
> libc6. I switch back to VT2, and found the pico was still "reading
> file". On vt1, every command, including shutdown, didn't start because
> of not being able to open a shared library. killall pico (in the hopes
> that killing it would free up the memory it stole) crashed with a
> segfault. I tried to login on VT3, but after typing root and the
> password and enter, I got the following message
> "init: Id "c3" respawning too fast; disabled for 5 minutes"
> Eventually, the same thing happened on my other VTs. Finally, after a
> few minutes, pico finally crashed, or exited, or whatever, and I was
> able to restart normally. I haven't tried to reproduce the error, but
> I could if so desired. The only messages in the system log are the
> above message for c3, c1 and c4 one time each.
> Isn't the kernel supposed to prevent this sort of this from
> happening?
> --A. Valys
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