Sunday, January 6, 2008

Tickless Scheduling

The tickless idle loop work going on in the Linux community right now looks very interesting. The tickless/dynticks infrastructure is integrated in the 2.6 kernels and allows individual CPUs to spend longer periods of time in the idle state between events when nothing is scheduled. This is accomplished by adding a new timer/event API and by ongoing work to update drivers and userland daemons to use more sensible event notification mechanisms. For large clusters of Linux machines, this has the potential to have a significant impact on operating expenses (power + cooling) as individual processors can spend more time in deeper ACPI sleep states.

What is the status of work in this area in the FreeBSD? Is this something we could work with a grad student on during the next Google Summer of Code?

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