Help! Altos 5.3.1 fork is failing!

Jerry Gardner jerry at altos86.Altos.COM
Thu Oct 19 08:56:41 AEST 1989

In article <506 at oglvee.UUCP> jr at oglvee.UUCP (Jim Rosenberg) writes:
>What the bleep is getcpages?  It sounds like an internal kernel routine to get
>continuous pages in RAM.  Is this call issued by the paging daemon?  How could
>it fail on a request to get only 1 page unless I'm out of swap space?  (Which
>I'm not.  We're getting these with many many thousand blocks of free swap
>space -- we have a swap(1) which will show these.)

Getpages is an internal kernel routine that allocates contiguous pages of
kernel virtual memory.  It's not called by the paging daemon, but rather to
allocate or grow regions, among other things.

>Is there a tunable parameter that will rescue me here?  

Not really.  You really are running out of swap space.  Even though
"swap -l" may  show plenty of swap space remaining, it is misleading.

UNIX allocates swap space for the entire .data and .bss regions whenever
a process is exec'ed.  Even though swap -l shows plenty of swap space 
available, most of the swap space is allocated to processes, which, although
they may not currently be swapped out, still tie up the swap space.

Your best solution: get more RAM.  The 2000 in my office that I use as a 
single-user personal machine has 24MB.  If you can't get more RAM, you could
try a larger swap partition, but if your system is heavily loaded, it'll just
thrash, constantly paging and swapping things in and out.

Jerry Gardner, NJ6A					Altos Computer Systems
UUCP: {sun|pyramid|sco|amdahl|uunet}!altos86!jerry	2641 Orchard Parkway
Internet: jerry at				San Jose, CA  95134
I survived the Big One, October 17, 1989                946-6700

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