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From Rob Hartill <>
Subject inquiry regarding child process reaping (fwd)
Date Mon, 19 Aug 1996 05:58:11 GMT

not acked.

----- Forwarded message from craig horman -----

Subject: inquiry regarding child process reaping
Date: Sun, 18 Aug 1996 22:06:45 -0700
Message-ID: <>
From: craig horman <>

This is not a bug report, but a request for information.

I wonder if you would take the time to answer a few question from a potential
Apache user? I'm considering switching our server (the CS department of the
University of Washington) from NCSA 1.4.2 to Apache. It's currently
running on a Pentium-90 (Linux 1.2.13), and handles about 1.5 million
hits a month. My questions are:

	- Is there a /proc hack to do file-descriptor passing to children,
	  for Linux? It may not be currently feasible to upgrade to Linux 
	  2.0.x (which i believe does support fd passing).

	- More significantly, we intermittently run into a problem with
	  amd hanging (it's a known problem on AIX, OSF/1, Linux, and
	  possibly other platforms). Since amd is single-threaded, when 
	  it hangs, all subsequent requests hang as well. This causes
	  (under NCSA) all pre-forked children to eventually go into a 
	  disk wait state, whereupon the server starts to fork children
	  on a per-request basis, and they go into DW as well. Eventually
	  the number of children exceeds MAXPROC for the machine (512),
	  thoroughly disrupting service. I noticed a "max requests per 
	  child" feature of Apache, but I need a mechanism whereby "hung"
	  children are eventually reaped, and wonder if the timeout
	  mechanism would handle this.

Thank you for your time.

Craig Horman
CS Lab

----- End of forwarded message from craig horman -----

Rob Hartill (
The Internet Movie Database (IMDb)
           ...more movie info than you can poke a stick at.

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