Solaris 7 3/99 Online Release Notes (SUNWrdm)

Non-Root Applications Using All Available Swap Space Can Hang a System Or/And Cause Critical System Daemons to Die (1189666)

Non-root applications sometimes use all available swap space, which can result in a hung system or cause critical system daemons to die.

Workaround: Because the VM subsystem reserves a small amount of swap space that is in the form of physical memory for root processes, it enables system administrators to log in and kill offending user processes that have used all available swap space. Therefore, system hangs are prevented and critical system daemons can keep running.

Note -

Because non-root processes cannot reserve swap space against this pool, some non-root processes may no longer be available with ENOMEM whenever you type the df or swap -s command and a message is displayed indicating that a small amount of swap space is still available.