Out of memory kernel death

Chris Griffin (boozer@vanadium.rollins.edu)
Mon, 5 May 1997 11:25:29 -0400 (EDT)

A small question?
How should linux react when a run-away process attempts to grab
all the memory? I had such an occurance today. Because of STUPID
PROGRAMMING ERROR Technology(tm) I had a job that went into an allocation
loop and grabbed all the memory. As soon as every little bit of swap was
used up the system froze and I got a "kernel: unable to load
interpretor". Is this the proper/planned behavior in this case? I would
think either the process would die with an unable to get free page error,
or the kernel would oops with the same problem and reset. I am using
kernel 2.0.30 / libc5.3.12 on an SMP enabled p6dnf 2x200mhz ppro system.
BTW: ps reported the process was in an uninteruptable sleep state (I suppose
because of the memory allocation loop) so I couldn't kill it :(