I run a long bootstrapping compilation. I have 16G of physical memory but my main process attains 32G virtual memory.

UPDATE (response to Austin Hemmelgarn's comment): This is on a two core Intel Xeon E5-4610 CPU @ 2.30 GHz.

If kswapd0 uses about 20% of cpu cycles on this Linux machine, does this mean thrashing? Can I fix this other than installing new RAM modules?

UPDATE2 vmstat 1 shows 10 to 20 000 swapin and 0 to 30 000 swapout

  • It could be worse, it could be better. Could be worth seeing if you can do something to improve it, but if it only takes 20% longer, is it worth it? Dec 18, 2018 at 10:26
  • Some extra info about the system would be helpful. 20% CPU utilization on a Core i7 is very different from 20% CPU utilization on an Atom, and when swapping is involved your storage configuration may matter too. Dec 18, 2018 at 20:31
  • Run 'vmstat 1' for 10s or so and observe the 'swap' column - it has two sub-columns 'si' and 'so' for swap-in and swap-out.
    – wef
    Dec 19, 2018 at 7:59
  • Helló :-) Since somewhere linux 3.0 I experienced that as if also disk load would somehow influence that shown cpu usage, what I consider bad.
    – peterh
    Dec 19, 2018 at 11:18


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