Brad Fitzpatrick (brad) wrote,
Brad Fitzpatrick

thundering herd; bleh

Imagine the following scenario:
  • Parent process opens listening socket, but will never accept() on it. Opening in parent so future forked child processes will inherit the fd, and because it's a low port (perhaps) and we want to open it before we drop root.
  • Child processes (one per CPU) inherit listening fd, but they're event-based, handling many connections each, so they can't do a blocking accept() on it...
See where this is going? :-)
  • So if each child has readability of that listening socket fd in its select/epoll/queue set, guess what? Thundering herd. The kernel wakes up all processes, but only one accepts the new client connection.
So instead I guess I have to...
  • have a socketpair between parent and each child for communication,
  • watch readability of the listening fd in parent process,
  • on readability, send a message to "best" child (for some definition of best) to accept on the listening socket which it has, but isn't watching readability on.
  • perhaps have children tell the parent process when connections go away, so parent knows approximate load on each child.
Feels kinda lame that I have to do this.

Any better suggestions?
Tags: lazyweb, mogilefs, tech
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