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SubjectRe: [RFC][PATCH 0/3] beat kswapd with the proverbial clue-bat
Linus Torvalds wrote:

>On Sun, 5 Sep 2004, Nick Piggin wrote:
>>Hmm, and the crowning argument for not stopping at order 3 is that if we
>>never use higher order allocations, nothing will care about their watermarks
>>anyway. I think I had myself confused when that question in the first place.
>>So yeah, stopping at a fixed number isn't required, and as you say it keeps
>>things general and special cases minimal.
>Hey, please refute my "you need 20% free" to get even to order-3 for most
>cases first.

s/need 20% free/need to free 20%/ ?

I won't refute that. It is an unfortunate effect of using dumb scanning to
free higher order memory. Orthogonal to my patch, which just uses the
freeing mechanism to ensure kswapd gets off its bottom and does some
work for
higher order allocators.

>It's probably acceptable to have a _very_ backgrounded job that does
>freeing if order-3 isn't available, but it had better be pretty
>slow-moving, I suspect. On the order of "It's probably ok to try to aim
>for up to 25% free 'overnight' if the machine is idle" but it's almost
>certainly not ok to aggressively push things out to that degree..

I think my mechanism is about as on-demand as you can get. I think we've
typically leaned this way WRT the memory manager as opposed to background
scanning and freeing.... so sure you could introduce a new method for
higher order memory (ie. defragmenting), but I think you'd still want to use
my kswapd scheme in that case as well.

So instead of always freeing pages, you'd say:
if (!watermark_ok(order 0 pages))
if (!watermark_ok(order-that-i-need))

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