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#1: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-26 16:17:45 by John Deighan

We have an Apache/mod_perl application running under Windows Server 2003
that periodically experiences
"Out of memory" errors (they appear in the Apache error logs) which
forces Apache to restart. Our application does, in fact, use a lot of
memory, and we believe that this is not due to a bug or memory leak.
What we would like is to run this application in a 64 bit environment, thus
allowing us to use more than the 2 GB memory that the Apache process ('httpd')
is limited to (the "Out of memory" errors always occur as the memory usage
of the httpd process approaches this 2 GB limit).

We know that we will need to run a 64 bit version of Windows on 64 bit
hardware to accomplish this. Furthermore, we know that ActiveState has a
binary Perl install of a 64 bit Perl. However, we're not aware of either a
64 bit Apache (though recently I found the blackdot site -
http://www.blackdot.be/ - that provides a Windows compatible binary build
of 64 bit apache, though I know very little about it) or a 64 bit mod_perl.
However, we're also not sure if either of these are needed to escape the
2 GB memory limitation. E.g., can 64 bit Perl be used with a 32 bit
Apache and/or mod_perl?

Any help with accomplishing what we need would be greatly appreciated,
including the possibility of hiring someone on a contract basis to
help us.



OS: Microsoft Windows Server 2003
Perl: v 5.8.9 ActiveState build 826
Apache 2.2.11
mod_perl 2 (not sure of the exact version, but very recent)

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#2: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-27 12:57:35 by Michiel Beijen

Hi John,

On Wed, 2011-01-26 at 10:17 -0500, John Deighan wrote:
> However, we're also not sure if either of these are needed to escape the
> 2 GB memory limitation. E.g., can 64 bit Perl be used with a 32 bit
> Apache and/or mod_perl?

You should use the same architecture for Perl and Apache.

> Any help with accomplishing what we need would be greatly appreciated,
> including the possibility of hiring someone on a contract basis to
> help us.

Probably because of the fact that the Apache foundation does not ship
64-bit builds for Windows (which is a shame!), ActiveState does not ship
a mod_perl with their 64- bit Perl. Compiling your own mod_perl would be
possible but you need to use preferably the same compiler that was used
for Apache + perl.

If you would want to switch to StrawberryPerl 5.12.x 64-bit, you can use
this pre-compiled mod_perl:
http://strawberryperl.com/package/kmx/mod_perl/

--
Mike

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#3: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-27 13:24:53 by Zeno Davatz

Hi

Am 27.01.2011 um 12:57 schrieb Michiel Beijen <michiel.beijen@otrs.com>:

> Hi John,
>
> On Wed, 2011-01-26 at 10:17 -0500, John Deighan wrote:
>> However, we're also not sure if either of these are needed to escape the
>> 2 GB memory limitation. E.g., can 64 bit Perl be used with a 32 bit
>> Apache and/or mod_perl?
>
> You should use the same architecture for Perl and Apache.
>
>> Any help with accomplishing what we need would be greatly appreciated,
>> including the possibility of hiring someone on a contract basis to
>> help us.
>
> Probably because of the fact that the Apache foundation does not ship
> 64-bit builds for Windows (which is a shame!), ActiveState does not ship
> a mod_perl with their 64- bit Perl. Compiling your own mod_perl would be
> possible but you need to use preferably the same compiler that was used
> for Apache + perl.
>
> If you would want to switch to StrawberryPerl 5.12.x 64-bit, you can use
> this pre-compiled mod_perl:
> http://strawberryperl.com/package/kmx/mod_perl/

Is mod_perl compiled with MinGW or with cl.exe for windows?

Seems that apxs suggest MinGW.

I got the same problem with mod_ruby for windows.

Best
Zeno

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#4: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-27 15:10:40 by John Deighan

I'd forgotten about Strawberry Perl (came across it about a year ago, but never got around to trying
it). One question, though: I'm thinking there's not much point to using a 64-bit version of mod_perl
unless I'm using it with a 64-bit version of Apache. Where can I get a 64-bit version of Apache that
will with with the mod_perl below?

On 1/27/2011 6:57 AM, Michiel Beijen wrote:
> Hi John,
>
> ... etc.
>
> If you would want to switch to StrawberryPerl 5.12.x 64-bit, you can use
> this pre-compiled mod_perl:
> http://strawberryperl.com/package/kmx/mod_perl/
>
> --
> Mike

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#5: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-27 21:00:19 by Michiel Beijen

Hi John,

On Thu, January 27, 2011 15:10, John Deighan wrote:
> One question, though: I'm thinking there's not much point to using a
> 64-bit version of mod_perl
> unless I'm using it with a 64-bit version of Apache. Where can I get a
> 64-bit version of Apache that
> will with with the mod_perl below?

You're right, you should not use 64-bit perl with a 32-bit apache
You should get the one from Blackdot probably:
http://www.blackdot.be/?inc=apache/binaries

--
Mike

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#6: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-28 01:05:45 by Dave Hodgkinson

--Apple-Mail-31-38365877
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
Content-Type: text/plain;
charset=us-ascii


On 26 Jan 2011, at 15:17, John Deighan wrote:

> What we would like is to run this application in a 64 bit environment, =
thus
> allowing us to use more than the 2 GB memory that the Apache process =
('httpd')
> is limited to (the "Out of memory" errors always occur as the memory =
usage
> of the httpd process approaches this 2 GB limit).

Can I just say: WTF? 2G in an Apache? Surely there's a better way of =
architecting
this?=

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#7: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-28 01:14:13 by mpeters

On 01/27/2011 07:05 PM, Dave Hodgkinson wrote:

> Can I just say: WTF? 2G in an Apache? Surely there's a better way of architecting
> this?

One thing to remember is that he's running Windows which doesn't have
Copy-On-Write memory, so depending on what he's doing it might not take
up as much memory if it were being run on Linux (or other OS with COW).

Another thing that maybe the OP should look at (if he hasn't already) is
to run a proxy in front of the main mod_perl application. Even if the
proxy is on the same machine it will help because you can reduce the
number of memory-heavy mod_perl processes/threads and handle the same
number of connections.

But, even after all that I have applications where we consistently run
3-4G just for mod_perl/Apache.

--
Michael Peters
Plus Three, LP

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#8: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-28 01:41:51 by Michael Ludwig

Michael Peters schrieb am 27.01.2011 um 19:14 (-0500):

> But, even after all that I have applications where we consistently
> run 3-4G just for mod_perl/Apache.

But surely not in one process as the OP said he'd like to do?

--
Michael Ludwig

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#9: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-28 02:16:17 by mpeters

On 01/27/2011 07:41 PM, Michael Ludwig wrote:
> Michael Peters schrieb am 27.01.2011 um 19:14 (-0500):
>
>> But, even after all that I have applications where we consistently
>> run 3-4G just for mod_perl/Apache.
>
> But surely not in one process as the OP said he'd like to do?

No you're right, but I'm guessing he might be running a threaded MPM, so
single process, multiple threads.

--
Michael Peters
Plus Three, LP

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#10: Re: experiencing Out of memory errors

Posted on 2011-01-28 03:02:39 by wrowe

On 1/27/2011 7:16 PM, Michael Peters wrote:
> On 01/27/2011 07:41 PM, Michael Ludwig wrote:
>> Michael Peters schrieb am 27.01.2011 um 19:14 (-0500):
>>
>>> But, even after all that I have applications where we consistently
>>> run 3-4G just for mod_perl/Apache.
>>
>> But surely not in one process as the OP said he'd like to do?
>
> No you're right, but I'm guessing he might be running a threaded MPM, so single process,
> multiple threads.

Exactly. Even constraining httpd to smaller stacks is unlikely to be wise
with mod_perl running, consider the default is 256kb IIRC. Shrinking this
to 128k obviously is a big help, but is unrealistic.

I agree with Peters, run a proxy in front of the server hosting mod_perl.
Even when we ship binary 64 bit for win32, there are far too many broken
perl and similar modules which don't expect sizeof(long*) > sizeof(long),
which has tripped up many porters. Most of these defects are gone from
apr and httpd, and perl and modperl can likely catch up quickly, but to
isolate every possible modperl XS package on cpan and identify all those
which make stupid long x = (long)xptr; assignments will be arduous.

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#11: Running a proxy in front of mod_perl on Win32

Posted on 2011-01-28 09:31:32 by Michiel Beijen

On Fri, January 28, 2011 01:14, Michael Peters wrote:
> Another thing that maybe the OP should look at (if he hasn't already) is
> to run a proxy in front of the main mod_perl application. Even if the
> proxy is on the same machine it will help because you can reduce the
> number of memory-heavy mod_perl processes/threads and handle the same
> number of connections.

I have read that advice before; then it was because of this bug concerning
running mod_ssl + mod_perl at the same time on Win32:
https://issues.apache.org/bugzilla/show_bug.cgi?id=36751

Unfortunately the bug still exists but the bug report was set to invalid
because it did not get proper attention.

What would be the best (windows-style) way of running a proxy in front of
apache?

Insights are welcome!
--
Mike

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#12: Re: Running a proxy in front of mod_perl on Win32

Posted on 2011-01-28 10:24:04 by Hendrik Schumacher

Am Fr, 28.01.2011, 09:31, schrieb Michiel Beijen:
> On Fri, January 28, 2011 01:14, Michael Peters wrote:
>> Another thing that maybe the OP should look at (if he hasn't already) is
>> to run a proxy in front of the main mod_perl application. Even if the
>> proxy is on the same machine it will help because you can reduce the
>> number of memory-heavy mod_perl processes/threads and handle the same
>> number of connections.
>
> I have read that advice before; then it was because of this bug concerning
> running mod_ssl + mod_perl at the same time on Win32:
> https://issues.apache.org/bugzilla/show_bug.cgi?id=36751
>
> Unfortunately the bug still exists but the bug report was set to invalid
> because it did not get proper attention.
>
> What would be the best (windows-style) way of running a proxy in front of
> apache?
>
> Insights are welcome!
> --
> Mike
>
>

(Linux-style) I use nginx and it works great (by coping with ssl and
keep-alives) whether you allow it to cache requests or not. It can serve
thousands of simultaneous connections and still has just a memory
footprint of a few mb. I dont know if the event-model works as great under
windows but there are windows builds available on the website
(http://nginx.org) so it should be worth a try.

Hendrik

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#13: Re: Running a proxy in front of mod_perl on Win32

Posted on 2011-01-31 21:19:16 by Perrin Harkins

On Fri, Jan 28, 2011 at 3:31 AM, Michiel Beijen <michiel.beijen@otrs.com> wrote:
> On Fri, January 28, 2011 01:14, Michael Peters wrote:
>> Another thing that maybe the OP should look at (if he hasn't already) is
>> to run a proxy in front of the main mod_perl application. Even if the
>> proxy is on the same machine it will help because you can reduce the
>> number of memory-heavy mod_perl processes/threads and handle the same
>> number of connections.
>
> I have read that advice before; then it was because of this bug concerning
> running mod_ssl + mod_perl at the same time on Win32:
> https://issues.apache.org/bugzilla/show_bug.cgi?id=36751

Even if that problem is fixed, the advice to use a proxy server is good.

> What would be the best (windows-style) way of running a proxy in front of
> apache?

There are many proxy servers available. If you search the list
archives for "proxy" you should find many posts discussing the pros
and cons of various ones.

- Perrin

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