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    SubjectRe: why swap at all?
    Hi Linux-gurus,

    I agree with Anthony Disante, maybe not all users want swapping. I have
    myself felt very annoying with swapping lately but I've not yet tried to
    disable it.

    In school I've studied the swapping concept from a theoretical point
    of view, and I fully understand the fact that swapping, if used
    properly, can both increase performance and provide a safe way to get
    out of a bad situation when the box runs out of memory. The problem is
    that in reality this does not work, not on Linux nor on Windows 2000
    which I use at home. Unfortunately I cannot provide a specific reason
    why it does not work, I'm very much a end-user/desktop-user, I'm not a
    kernel hacker (yet). But I see two things that needs improvement atm:

    A) when I do large data processing operations the computer is always
    very very slow afterwards

    B) if I have X Mb of RAM then there should not be imho a single swap
    read/write until the whole of my X Mb RAM is completely stuffed, is this
    so today?

    ---

    Also, imagine that I disable swap today and start a large data
    processing operation. During this operation I try to start a new
    process, here ideally the program should not OOM but instead the memory
    allocated for the data processing operation should be decreased. Is this
    possible using today's technology? Can be divide memory into two sorts,
    one for processes (here to stay memory) and another sort for batch
    operations (where the amount of memory does not really matter but less
    memory means less performance). I see the problem with "taking memory
    back" though, I guess its impossible.



    Regards,
    /m
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