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Bug#404143: Fans unreliable under load, permanent memory leak



Package: linux-image-2.6.18-3-amd64
Version: 2.6.18-7
Severity: grave
Justification: hardware overheating hazard; requires periodic reboots

(This is not the same bug as #400488 (upstream #7122))

This bug affects several amd64 notebooks from HP, notably the nx6125
and the nx6325; there may be other affected machines as well.

Kernel team, please apply the patches for
http://bugzilla.kernel.org/show_bug.cgi?id=5534

This bug is there merely to remind the kernel team not to release etch
without the patches :) However I'm not sure which upstream version of
linux, if any, contains the patches in the (long) trail of comments.
So, it might be necessary to wait for a few days until the patches
arrive in Linus' tree.

Symptoms:
- under load, the fans fail to turn on when the temperature reaches
  and then exceeds the normal threshold, which is 58°C.
- there is a permanent memory leak in the kernel, even when the system
  is idle.  The leak is visible by looking at
  $ grep Slab: /proc/meminfo         and
  $ grep Acpi-State /proc/slabinfo

Workaround:
- if overheating, shut down the computer and let it cool down; or
  let it shut itself down to prevent a fire hazard.
- if the only problem is the memory leak, reboot.

Consequence: linux-image-2.6.18-3-amd63 (=2.6.18-7) is unsuitable for
release.

The memory leak is described at:

http://www.mail-archive.com/linux-acpi@vger.kernel.org/msg03119.html

Today I had to reboot my HP Compaq nx6325 because the kernel was
eating 1.8 Gb out of the 1.9 Gb of RAM in the system, after about 9
days of uptime.  Then I started a hourly cron job to monitor
/proc/meminfo and /proc/slabinfo as described above:

2006-06-21T20:06:10: Slab:            30296 kB
2006-17-21T20:17:01: Slab:            37756 kB
2006-17-21T21:17:01: Slab:            48116 kB
2006-17-21T22:17:01: Slab:            55764 kB
2006-17-21T23:17:01: Slab:            69904 kB
-- Reboot with acpi=noirq: only one CPU found --
2006-24-21T23:24:10: Slab:            10444 kB
-- Reboot with pci=noacpi: only one CPU found --
2006-30-21T23:30:26: Slab:             9676 kB
2006-30-21T23:30:26: Acpi-State             0      0     80   48    1 : tunables  120   60    8 : slabdata      0      0      0
-- Reboot with no options: OK, both CPUs found --
2006-34-21T23:34:23: Slab:            10584 kB
2006-34-21T23:34:23: Acpi-State             0      0     80   48    1 : tunables  120   60    8 : slabdata      0      0      0
2006-17-22T00:17:01: Slab:            15424 kB
2006-17-22T00:17:01: Acpi-State         23088  23088     80   48    1 : tunables  120   60    8 : slabdata    481    481      0
2006-17-22T01:17:01: Slab:            29956 kB
2006-17-22T01:17:01: Acpi-State         59136  59136     80   48    1 : tunables  120   60    8 : slabdata   1232   1232      0

I'm more than willing to help test a kernel package, but I'll be on
[VAC] from 2006-12-23 to 2007-01-03 inclusive.  So, please do not
release Etch just now :)

-- 
Ludovic Brenta.




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