[GE users] Nice level on processes

Brian R Smith brian at cypher.acomp.usf.edu
Fri Apr 1 17:34:36 BST 2005

Hey guys,

I was just curious... I'm running SGE on a COTS-style beowulf and I was
wondering what others have done with regards to the nice level of
processes in their queue configuration.  

On my more up-to-date SMP clusters, I typically set the nice level just
below the nice for rsh (for mpich, administration) and sge_execd.  For
the less powerful, single-processor COTS machines, I usually drop it to
around -7, a few ticks below sge_execd and right on par with the nice I
have set for the rsh servers on each node.

My tests have shown that there is no apparent performance hit as a
result of this, granted, these nodes are used strictly for computations
so there should not be too many interrupts plaguing my processes at run-
time.  However, I've noticed that on the cheaper COTS AMD boxes, memory
and disk hungry processes that are not reniced will cause those types of
machines to stop responding to any and all requests for some period of
time, often triggering my pager saying that a node is down.  Having the
processes reniced as I have done seems to have alleviated this issue.

Has anyone else run into a similar scenario?

Brian Smith

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