Review request for 5049299

Andrew Haley aph at
Sat May 23 08:28:43 UTC 2009

Martin Buchholz wrote:
> On Fri, May 22, 2009 at 15:13, Michael McMahon <Michael.McMahon at>wrote:
>> Martin,
>> Thanks. Great comments. Just a few comments of my own
>> on a couple of points.
>> 1. Linux won't benefit from this change as much as solaris, since due to
>> its
>>   "memory overcommit" architecture, it doesn't suffer from the problem (so
>> much)
>>    in the first place (though memory overcommit causes some problems of its
>> own).
>>    Nevertheless, maybe it could simplify the code a bit if we use
>> posix_spawn() on Linux
>>    as well. So, I will look into that.
> Any company running server farms (think "Sun" or "Google")
> would like to "bin-pack" as many processes as possible onto them,
> and transient doubling of process size is a big problem in such an
> environment.  Think of this as a
> saving-the-planet-from-global-warning feature.

But those running Linux won't benefit from such a change because
on Linux there is no transient doubling of process size: all that happens
is that the page table entries in the new process are mapped copy on write.
The extra pages count towards the overcommit limit, but that's wholly


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