- Paperback: 768 pages
- Publisher: Prentice Hall; 1 edition (29 April 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0131453483
- ISBN-13: 978-0131453487
- Product Dimensions: 17.5 x 3.8 x 23.1 cm
Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
915,025 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #398 in Books > Computers & Internet > Software & Graphics > Internet Applications > Web-server Software > UNIX & Linux Operating Systems > Linux Distributions
- #1014 in Books > Computers & Internet > Computer Science > Architecture & Microprocessors
- #4147 in Books > Computers & Internet > Digital Lifestyle > Online Shopping > Amazon
- See Complete Table of Contents
Understanding the Linux Virtual Memory Manager (Bruce Perens'' Open Source) Paperback – 29 Apr 2004
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From the Back Cover
Finally, a comprehensive guide to the Linux VM!
VM's behavior affects every Linux kernel subsystem and dramatically impacts overall performance. But until now, there was only one way to understand VM: study the poorly documented source one line at a time. Now there's an easier, faster alternative. This book describes VM in unprecedented detail, presenting both theoretical foundations and a line-by-line source code commentary. It systematically covers everything from physical memory description to out-of-memory management. Coverage includes:
- Linux VM 2.4 architecture in depth-with diagrams and call graphs
- Physical memory description, page tables, address spaces, and memory allocation
- High memory, swapping, shared memory, and much more
- Expert guidance for analyzing the code of any open source project
- New Linux 2.6 kernel features in every chapter
Well organized and superbly written, Understanding the Linux Virtual Memory Manager will be indispensable to every kernel programmer and researcher.
Complete VM Learning Lab! Contains the author's new toolkit for exploring VM, including a browsable version of kernel source, CodeViz call graph generator; and VMRegress for analyzing and benchmarking VM. Also includes all code commentary in HTML, PDF, and plain text formats.
About the Author
MEL GORMAN specializes in documenting open source software. He holds a MSc in Computer Science from the University of Limerick, Ireland, and has served as an instructor there. He has worked as a system administrator, applications developer, and consultant, and has been researching Linux memory management for more than two years. Currently he is an applications developer with J2EE technologies at IBM, Dublin.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Gorman is attempting an outreach to potential linux developers. The book has two parts. The first explains key concepts for the VMM. He quickly gets into the issues, with little preamble. In other words, you need at a minimum to be fluent in C, and have some acquaintance with the ideas of memory management, though not necessarily with linux.
Each algorithm in this book is not that intricate. As a rough guide to difficulty level, if you can understand a typical algorithm from the texts by Knuth or Aho or Sedgewick, then you should not have any trouble here.
The second part of the book has code listings with accompanying detailed commentary. This is different from, and substantially improves upon the inline comments, which are sparse to non-existent in the exampled code. To some of you who want to try changing code, the second part's annotations may be the crucial portions of the book. It is rare to see such extensive commentary of source code in book form.
The book is an in depth look into intricate workings of one of the most complicated and sophisticated parts of any OS that supports virtual memory concepts. As such, it is not an easy read for people who are not familiar with programming and general OS concepts, and since, to be honest, most people today do not fall into this category, this book has a very specific audience. In short, if you do not already know how TLB operates, do not even look at it.
The text itself is nicely organized, hierarchy is well defined, concepts explained. Detailed description of logic is supported by the code examples that are dissected in detail, and in my mind provide an excellent learning resource.
One drawback that caused 4 stars, instead of 5, is the lack of common terminology; rather, author explains in his own words some of the details. As such, these explanations tend to be unnecessarily complicated, burdened by the re-defining of the every day language that is used in a wrong way.
Overall, a very, very good resource on Linux VM, and a definite must for a serious kernel developer.
Given that goal the book is well structured, building up from from basic functionality and giving references to both theory and measurement as appropriate
There's ~500 pages of annotated source that's preceded by a clear ~200 page discussion of its functionality and behavior