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From J Chris Anderson <>
Subject Re: CouchDB Crashing under high CPU wait
Date Mon, 12 Jul 2010 21:47:32 GMT

On Jul 10, 2010, at 2:03 AM, [mRg] wrote:

> Hi all,
> I wonder if any of you can help me with a problem that has been plaguing us
> for months.
> We have CouchDB running on 3 virtualised (VMWare) RHEL5 servers. Each
> instance of couchdb replicating to the other. The disks for these virtual
> machines sit on top of a HP EVA / SAN.
> We are noticing that sometimes the disk latency on the SAN can get high
> (when a lot of snapshots/backups are occuring) which will cause high CPU
> wait (>4.0) on the machines, at these point CouchDB seem to fail. No error
> message in the logs, it just stops without warning.

This is usually a symptom that Erlang is unable to allocate memory. When that happens, it
just goes away, no logs, no nothing.

It could be the disk wait is cause mochiweb to continue to accept sockets, and allocate processes
to handle the connections, until at some point there is no memory left to allocate.

One option is to configure the max_connections # to be smaller.

But I am just stabbing in the dark here as to the cause of the memory over-usage.

And yes it could be the OS killing Couch for other reasons.

There is a heartbeat option which ought to be the robust fix for this (it will reboot couch
automatically). Someone else on this list will know better than I, how to ensure that it runs.

- Chris

> We've turned full debug logging on and there is nothing in any of the logs
> showing any kind of couchdb error but we're seeing all 3 machines fail at
> the same time which leads us to believe it may be due to the cpu wait / disk
> IO latency issue. We also have Solr running on these boxes and it doesnt
> seem to be effected by this.
> I was wondering if anyone has seen this issue before and if there was
> anything else we can try (other than monitoring to see if the process is not
> running and restart it). Could some other process on RHEL be killing off the
> couch process ?
> We have tried with 0.10.1 / 0.10.2 and have now upgraded Erlang and are
> running with 0.11 but still having exactly the same issues.
> Any help would be appreciated as we go live at the end of the month after a
> year in development and this is the only outstanding issue and it
> is perplexing to say the least.
> Regards
> Stephen

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