I'm running on 4G RAM with an extra 6G swap partition, SSD is a pretty decent SAMSUNG MZMPA128HMFU model. System responds very well to workloads when things stay in RAM, but as soon as things reach the swap partition in any meaningful quantity (let say 1GB+ swap used), responsiveness goes completely down the drain during swapping episodes. SSD light stays on for several seconds while apparently loads of stuffs get paged in or out, during this all other IO is blocked. I've seen system load jump from 0.8 to 10 in a few seconds, then drop back down as IO gets going again. When swap is in active use (I keep a bunch of big apps open) these gagging swap episodes happen more and more often as uptime increases (at 26 days now).
I am looking at latencytop, but it isn't telling me much I could go on.
There seems to be no other solution at this point than stop enough apps to be able to do swapoff -a and just stop using swap. Not sure how this affects my usage patterns, I'm almost certain it's going to be enough for the set of apps I regularly run.
Turning vm.swappiness down to 1 doesn't help things. At least not by itself.
Is this some well known thing? What are my options to have decent desktop responsiveness while using virtual memory?