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Re: Is there a limitation on swap parition size linux can use?

On Fri, 2002-08-30 at 12:41, Goswin Brederlow wrote:
> Walter Tautz <wtautz@math.uwaterloo.ca> writes:
> > I heard that 2Gb is the limit. If so I would have
> > to create distinct swap partitions if I wanted to
> > have more than 2Gb swap? Just wondering...
> The older blends of kernels only allowed swap partitions up to 128MB.
> The newer kernels allow 2GB per swap partiton or file.
> Nobody said you can only have one partition. :)
> In fact its faster to spread the swap over several disks, having a
> small partition on each all with the same priority. Linux will then
> automatically "raid0" them for greater speed.
> If you need even more swap than 2GB per disk you can have multiple
> swap partitions or files on one disk. But then better keep them at
> different priorities (default) so they don't get used in parallel.
> MfG
>         Goswin
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I'd also note that if you watch the performance of memory and swap files
in gtop, both in RAM and in the swap, on a busy machine Linux apparently
compresses inactive data and code requirements - I've seen my box with
1/2 GiB RAM and 1/2 GiB swap reporting nearly 8 GiB RAM and 3 GiB swap
in use. Mind you, when I start using a program that had been tagged as
inactive, the system will thrash for more than a few seconds...

That said, if you can afford multiple 2 GiB partitions for swap, you
would be better off investing in RAM, and periodically recycling
anything that seems to have unduly huge memory requirements (68 java_vms
don't usually need 6 GiB of memory.) 
ML Kahnt New Markets Consulting
Tel: (613) 531-8684 / (613) 539-0935
Email: kahnt@hosehead.dyndns.org

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