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Displaying posts with tag: Site Reliability Engineering (reset)
vm.swappiness and OOM in RHEL6

The behavior of vm.swappiness was always a bit confusing for novice linux users, as setting vm.swappiness to 0 would not completely disable swapping in the system during a memory crunch. vm.swappiness would only affect the agressiveness of swapping.

Following upstream commit tried to give more control to parameter. This commit tried to avoid swapping completely when vm.swappiness is set to 0.

commit fe35004fbf9eaf67482b074a2e032abb9c89b1dd
Author: Satoru Moriya
Date: Tue May 29 15:06:47 2012 -0700
mm: avoid swapping out with swappiness==0

With above commit, setting vm.swappiness to “0” instructs the kernel not to initiate swapping until the amount of free and file-backed pages is less than the high water mark in a memory zone. In other words, it tries to reclaim as much memory that can be reclaimed, before swapping starts.
This greatly reduced the chances of swapping.

When this …

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fsfreeze in Linux

The fsfreeze command, is used to suspend and resume access to a file system. This allows consistent snapshots to be taken of the filesystem. fsfreeze supports Ext3/4, ReiserFS, JFS and XFS.

A filesystem can be frozen using following command:

# /sbin/fsfreeze -f /data

Now if you are writing to this filesystem, the process/command will be stuck. For example, following command will be stuck in D (UNINTERUPTEBLE_SLEEP) state:

# echo “testing” > /data/file

Only after the filesystem is unfreezed using the following command, can it continue:

# /sbin/fsfreeze -u /data

As per the fsfreeze main page, “fsfreeze is unnecessary for device-mapper devices. The device-mapper (and LVM) automatically freezes filesystem on the device when a snapshot creation is requested.”

fsfreeze is provided by the util-linux package in RHEL systems. Along with userspace support, fsfreeze also …

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