Optimizing memory management for computers using the UNIX operating system

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Virginia Tech

A consequence of the recent mergers affecting General Electric Aerospace, Martin Marietta and Lockheed has been the need to exchange information between, previously unrelated, work sites. One of these work sites is the Martin Marietta Data Center (MMDC). The information exchange is to be performed electronically to maximize efficiency. No capability exists within the MMDC to accommodate this information exchange.

A number of options that address this deficiency exist. The most plausible is the installation of a computer program on the MMDC's LAN that would enable the required information exchanges to take place.

In order to make the computer program operational, modifications to the computers that make up the MMDC LAN are necessary. Primarily, the amount of RAM the computers possess must be increased. This results in a change in the amount of swap space that must be available.

The intent of this project is to resolve the deficiency that exists by enabling the MMDC to exchange data electronically with other sites in the area.

A secondary goal of the project is to determine a better way of allocating swap space than the present method of simply using twice the amount of RAM.

The approach to the project is "two-pronged". An assessment of the mechanics of swapping is performed to see if it could be done more efficiently. And, an analysis of an operational network is performed to determine the empirical relationship between swap space and RAM. Retaining performance standards is an underlying requirement for reaching any conclusions.

By using a single formula to determine swap space needs for every network, it is implied that the swap space to RAM size relationship is the same for every network. What is unique about the methods used in this project is that actual relationships and utilization of the network in question are used in determining the swap space size requirements.

swap space size requirements