Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-support (176 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-support] Re: Unresponsive desktop
  • From: Peter Suetterlin <pit@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 5 Feb 2019 15:13:15 +0100
  • Message-id: <20190205141315.GA13564@lux.pit.lunda16>
Liam Proven wrote:
On 2/3/19 2:33 PM, Carlos E. R. wrote:
I noticed kswapd0 was busy long time, and that firefox had
about 10 gigs of virtual memory. The disk activity led was solid blue. I
couldn't find out more, the machine froze and had to be hard rebooted.

I would observe that RAM starvation seems to be the related to a number
of your problems.

Might be, but the core issue is that the system behaves bad when running short
of memory. You can easily trigger the behavior by having an application
requesting more memory than physically available (though less than RAM+swap),
and make (heavy) use of it so stuff gets permanently swapped in and out.

For me it happens during image processing. The laptop now has 32GB. I still
manage to trigger this if I'm not careful....

JFTR, the system is *not* crashed or dead, just totally unresponsive. One can
wait until the heavy swap io is over, and the system will be normal again,
without *any* notice in the logs.

The proper solution is not to mute the symptoms by running less applications
or buying more RAM (although it clearly helps). Somehow a desktop setup
should have some sort of protection that makes sure at least the core GUI
stuff doesn't get swapped out.
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