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Subject%u-order allocation failed


After simple bash fork bombing (about 200 forks) on my UP Celeron/96MB
I get quite a lot %u-allocations failed, but only when swap is
turned off.

When it's turned on, processes are still forking for some time
until i get messages like 'fork: Resource temporarily unavailable' or
'cannot redirect /dev/null: too many open files in system' (or similar)
and also 'cannot load blah blah return code 23' (don't remember
exact message)... load goes up to about 700 but _none_ of processess
get killed. Machine is almost unresponsible that time... i hardly managed
to Alt+SysRQ+UB ...

As mentioned in some other mail - no highmem, no lvm, md as module (unused).
2.4.10-xfs cvs co 25th September (not 12th :/ - info in previous mail was

When swap was off first i got some of
0-order (gfp=0x1d2/0) from c012ac08 (_alloc_pages+24)
beside it, in a few seconds also noticed
0-order (gfp=0x1f0/0) from c012ac08
0-order (gfp=0xf0/0) from c012ac08
at random order....
I also saw a really small number of
1-order (gfp=0x1f0/0) from c012ac08

During that time almost all processess were killed by VM, machine
was more responsible so i could freely do Alt+SysRQ+K and everything
went back to normal...

I'm not familiar with LinuxVM.. so... is it normal behaviour ? or (if not)
what's happening when such messages are printed my kernel ?


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