Re: per_cpu_pagesets degrades MPI performance

From: Jack Steiner <>
Date: 2005-04-08 04:52:27
On Tue, Apr 05, 2005 at 10:40:39AM +1000, Nick Piggin wrote:
> Jack Steiner wrote:
> [snip nice detective work]
> >Has anyone else seen this problem? I am considering adding
> >a config option to allow a site to control the batch size
> >used for per_cpu_pagesets. Are there other ideas that should 
> >be pursued? 
> >
> What about using a non power of 2 for the batch? Like 5.
> If that helps, then we can make a patch to clamp it to a
> good value. At a guess I'd say a power of 2 +/- 1 might be
> the way to go.
> Nick
> -- 
> SUSE Labs, Novell Inc.

Good idea. For the specific benchmark that I was running, batch sizes
of 0 (pcp disabled), 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 10, 11, 13 & 15 all produced good results. 
Batch sizes of 2, 4 and 8 produced horrible results.

Surprisingly 7 was not quite as good as the other good values but I attribute that
to an anomaly of the reference pattern of the specific benchmark.

Even more suprising (again an anomaly I think) was that a size of 13 ran
10% faster than any of the other sizes. I reproduced this data point several
times - it is real.

Our next step to to run the full benchmark suite. That should happen
within 2 weeks.

Tentatively, I'm planning to post a patch to change the batch size to 
2**n-1 but I'll wait for the results of the full benchmark.

I also want to finish understanding the issue of excessive memory
being trapped in the per_cpu lists.


Jack Steiner (          651-683-5302
Principal Engineer                      SGI - Silicon Graphics, Inc.

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Received on Thu Apr 7 14:54:08 2005

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