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SubjectRe: [PATCH 4.19 56/81] kernel/sysctl.c: do not override max_threads provided by userspace

> From: Michal Hocko <>
> commit b0f53dbc4bc4c371f38b14c391095a3bb8a0bb40 upstream.
> Partially revert 16db3d3f1170 ("kernel/sysctl.c: threads-max observe
> limits") because the patch is causing a regression to any workload which
> needs to override the auto-tuning of the limit provided by kernel.
> set_max_threads is implementing a boot time guesstimate to provide a
> sensible limit of the concurrently running threads so that runaways will
> not deplete all the memory. This is a good thing in general but there
> are workloads which might need to increase this limit for an application
> to run (reportedly WebSpher MQ is affected) and that is simply not
> possible after the mentioned change. It is also very dubious to
> override an admin decision by an estimation that doesn't have any direct
> relation to correctness of the kernel operation.
> Fix this by dropping set_max_threads from sysctl_max_threads so any
> value is accepted as long as it fits into MAX_THREADS which is important
> to check because allowing more threads could break internal robust futex
> restriction. While at it, do not use MIN_THREADS as the lower boundary
> because it is also only a heuristic for automatic estimation and admin
> might have a good reason to stop new threads to be created even when
> below this limit.

Ok, why not, but I smell followup work could be done:

> @@ -2635,7 +2635,7 @@ int sysctl_max_threads(struct ctl_table
> if (ret || !write)
> return ret;
> - set_max_threads(threads);
> + max_threads = threads;

AFAICT set_max_threads can now become __init.

Plus, I don't see any locking here, should this be WRITE_ONCE() at

Best regards,
(cesky, pictures)
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