Memory Hogging

Tim Towers (
Sun, 23 Jul 1995 19:22:36 +0100 (BST)

Dear Kernel-ites,

I have lurked for a while, not believing that no-one else had
noticed what I had... but I have either missed the thread or haven't
looked in the right places.

I am using linux on our Internet Gateway at work. It is running
1.2.11, compiled with whatever came with Slackware 2.2. The problem lies
with the httpd process, once in a while the system load will shoot up
from an average of 0.05 to about 10 and stay there for 5 minutes whilst
a httpd process decides that it is not actually going to get any more
memory and dies.

The box has 38Mb ram and over 100Mb of swap allocated, but this process
doesn't seem to use the swap space, crowding other processes out of
ram instead. Indeed, I have never seen more than 10Mb swap being used.

If top is running at the same time, you can see the process sitting there
at the top, with the SIZE column sitting at about 480, the RES column is
about 28,000 and the SHRD column is about 360.

I have tried to ulimit the process, but that seems to stop it impolitely
causing the same CPU hogging problem.

I wouldn't mind it growing if it just used swap (like my mirror processes)
and unfortunately, the CERN httpd is the only one which supports proxy.

This effect happens both with the self-compiled and pre-compiled binaries, but
I figure the problem lies in the kernel since it shouldn't behave that way.

Any help appreciated.


P.S. is there a fix to 'top' so that its output doesn't get corrupted by
some zombie processes?

|  Timothy Towers,, Grimwiz on IRC, Linux/Net Guru     |
|            Don't believe everything you read, hear or say                   |
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