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SubjectRe: Any stable 2.4 kernel?

I've also had some problems finding a stable 2.4 kernel.

I admin' a few machines, one of which is a DELL Poweredge 6300
(4x Xeon 550, 4GB RAM, 5GB swap, aic7xxx) that is mainly used for
heavy statistical analysis of gene sequences.

Some of these jobs run at 1.8GB/process.

I'm running RH7.1 and (was running) 2.4.3-12 kernel.

The strange thing was, no matter how loaded the machine, no swap
was ever used (??). We started to get a severe shortage of resources
during backups with the message:

mm: critical shortage of bounce buffers (from highmem.c)
(I/O exhausting low memory)

The machine would eventually become so unresponsive that a hard reset was
the only option.

I've just upgraded to kernel 2.4.12 and swap is now being used :)
Stability has been good, even under extreme loads (test was: 3x 1.8GB processes
while doing a backup).

I find it strange that RH latest updated kernel is 2.4.9 but the vm problems
were not fixed until 2.4.10.

Any feedback on these issues is very welcome.


Steve Batson
System Administrator
Victorian Institute of Animal Science
Victoria, Australia


> From: Igor Mozetic <>
> Date: Sat, 27 Oct 2001 11:48:25 +0200
> To:
> Subject: Any stable 2.4 kernel?
> I wonder if anybody has found a stable kernel for the following
> hardware: C440GX+, dual Xeon 550, 2GB RAM, 1GB swap, aic7xxx.
> Usage pattern is load > 2, highmem, not much I/O (maybe swap?).
> Some of our jobs take weeks, so stable means months between reboots.
> I found anything beyond 2.4.10 useless - lockups after a few days.
> Currently I run 2.4.3 with varying degree of success - initial lifespan
> was 4 months, but last reincarnation survived for 3 weeks only.
> Any recommendation for 2.4 or should I consider going back to 2.2 ?
> I don't need any fancy features (apart to SMP and highmem),
> only stability is important.
> -Igor Mozetic

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