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Subject[patch 2/7 -mm] oom: sacrifice child with highest badness score for parent
When a task is chosen for oom kill, the oom killer first attempts to
sacrifice a child not sharing its parent's memory instead.
Unfortunately, this often kills in a seemingly random fashion based on
the ordering of the selected task's child list. Additionally, it is not
guaranteed at all to free a large amount of memory that we need to
prevent additional oom killing in the very near future.

Instead, we now only attempt to sacrifice the worst child not sharing its
parent's memory, if one exists. The worst child is indicated with the
highest badness() score. This serves two advantages: we kill a
memory-hogging task more often, and we allow the configurable
/proc/pid/oom_adj value to be considered as a factor in which child to

Reviewers may observe that the previous implementation would iterate
through the children and attempt to kill each until one was successful
and then the parent if none were found while the new code simply kills
the most memory-hogging task or the parent. Note that the only time
oom_kill_task() fails, however, is when a child does not have an mm or
has a /proc/pid/oom_adj of OOM_DISABLE. badness() returns 0 for both
cases, so the final oom_kill_task() will always succeed.

Signed-off-by: David Rientjes <>
mm/oom_kill.c | 23 +++++++++++++++++------
1 files changed, 17 insertions(+), 6 deletions(-)

diff --git a/mm/oom_kill.c b/mm/oom_kill.c
--- a/mm/oom_kill.c
+++ b/mm/oom_kill.c
@@ -432,7 +432,10 @@ static int oom_kill_process(struct task_struct *p, gfp_t gfp_mask, int order,
unsigned long points, struct mem_cgroup *mem,
const char *message)
+ struct task_struct *victim = p;
struct task_struct *c;
+ unsigned long victim_points = 0;
+ struct timespec uptime;

if (printk_ratelimit())
dump_header(p, gfp_mask, order, mem);
@@ -446,17 +449,25 @@ static int oom_kill_process(struct task_struct *p, gfp_t gfp_mask, int order,
return 0;

- printk(KERN_ERR "%s: kill process %d (%s) score %li or a child\n",
- message, task_pid_nr(p), p->comm, points);
+ pr_err("%s: Kill process %d (%s) with score %lu or sacrifice child\n",
+ message, task_pid_nr(p), p->comm, points);

- /* Try to kill a child first */
+ /* Try to sacrifice the worst child first */
+ do_posix_clock_monotonic_gettime(&uptime);
list_for_each_entry(c, &p->children, sibling) {
+ unsigned long cpoints;
if (c->mm == p->mm)
- if (!oom_kill_task(c))
- return 0;
+ /* badness() returns 0 if the thread is unkillable */
+ cpoints = badness(c, uptime.tv_sec);
+ if (cpoints > victim_points) {
+ victim = c;
+ victim_points = cpoints;
+ }
- return oom_kill_task(p);
+ return oom_kill_task(victim);


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