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name Punditsdkoslkdosdkoskdo

BSD 50% interrupt utilization in irq0/clock

On OpenBSD on an Atom 450, with HPET configured in the BIOS and not, also with Hyperthreading/ACPI on-off, nothing seems to make a difference.

Here's my vmstat -iz

# vmstat 2
 procs    memory       page                    disk traps          cpu
 r b w    avm     fre  flt  re  pi  po  fr  sr wd0  int   sys   cs us sy id
 0 0 0   3488  981792  429   0   0   0   0   0  35 295771   906   89  1 51 48
 0 0 0   3492  981788   12   0   0   0   0   0   0 278490    37   10  0 50 50
^C
# vmstat -iz
interrupt                       total     rate
irq0/clock                      12115      102
irq96/inteldrm0                     0        0
irq133/ppb0                         0        0
irq96/em0                           0        0
irq84/ppb1                          0        0
irq81/em1                           0        0
irq131/ppb2                         0        0
irq82/em2                           0        0
irq132/ppb3                         0        0
irq83/em3                           0        0
irq84/uhci0                        28        0
irq83/uhci1                         0        0
irq84/ehci0                         2        0
irq80/pciide0                     877        7
irq82/pciide1                       0        0
irq81/ichiic0                       0        0
irq130/com0                       451        3
irq129/pckbc0                       0        0
Total                           13473      114

The irq0/clock continues to go out of control, this is about 1minute after booting....

# vmstat -s
       4096 bytes per page
     252939 pages managed
     245456 pages free
        865 pages active
       1015 pages inactive
          0 pages being paged out
          1 pages wired
          0 pages zeroed
          4 pages reserved for pagedaemon
          6 pages reserved for kernel
     132529 swap pages
          0 swap pages in use
          0 total anon's in system
          0 free anon's
      17558 page faults
      17368 traps
   47204661 interrupts
       4703 cpu context switches
         14 fpu context switches
      17854 software interrupts
      37197 syscalls
          0 pagein operations
          0 swap ins
          0 swap outs
        144 forks
         13 forks where vmspace is shared
         14 kernel map entries
          0 number of times the pagedaemon woke up
          0 revolutions of the clock hand
          0 pages freed by pagedaemon
          0 pages scanned by pagedaemon
          0 pages reactivated by pagedaemon
          0 busy pages found by pagedaemon
       9096 total name lookups
            cache hits (67% pos + 1% neg) system 0% per-directory
            deletions 0%, falsehits 0%, toolong 0%
      0 select collisions

Any ideas to reduce the load, thanks.

This perticular problem was likely asperbated by the fact that OpenBSD's sysctl is anemic. FBSD "poll" sysctl would of likely solved this much earlier.

The problem was due to a poorly written BIOS, specifically it's configuration and implmentation of a console/remote access serial port. It was spinning like crazy and generating these interrupts, even if not connected etc...

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