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    SubjectRe: [PATCH 12/14] Add a tunable that decides when memory should be compacted and when it should be reclaimed
    On Fri,  2 Apr 2010 17:02:46 +0100
    Mel Gorman <> wrote:

    > The kernel applies some heuristics when deciding if memory should be
    > compacted or reclaimed to satisfy a high-order allocation. One of these
    > is based on the fragmentation. If the index is below 500, memory will
    > not be compacted. This choice is arbitrary and not based on data. To
    > help optimise the system and set a sensible default for this value, this
    > patch adds a sysctl extfrag_threshold. The kernel will only compact
    > memory if the fragmentation index is above the extfrag_threshold.

    Was this the most robust, reliable, no-2am-phone-calls thing we could
    have done?

    What about, say, just doing a bit of both until something worked? For
    extra smarts we could remember what worked best last time, and make
    ourselves more likely to try that next time.

    Or whatever, but extfrag_threshold must die! And replacing it with a
    hardwired constant doesn't count ;)

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