RHCE System Optimization Basics · AboutNet

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RHCE System Optimization Basics



procfsis a virtual filesystem, usually mounted on/proc. Contains generic kernel parameters.

mount | grep proc
proc on /proc type proc (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime)

Utilities for displaing information like system processes (top,ps, etc…) takes data from the/procdirectory, for example,lscpuuse/proc/cpuinfofile as one of the source.

Wherein data that/proccontains may not be in human-readable format.

It is worth noting that/proccontains directories of the form/proc/<PID>in which there are files with the information about the currently running processes.

For example, output of the/proc/<PID>/cmdlineshows command, by whitch the process was started:

ps aux | grep -v grep | grep nginx
root      1449  0.0  0.0  46308  1148 ?        Ss   Dec16   0:00 nginx: master process /usr/sbin/nginx -c /etc/nginx/nginx.conf
nginx     1451  0.0  0.1  46824  2176 ?        S    Dec16   0:00 nginx: worker process

cat /proc/1449/cmdline 
nginx: master process /usr/sbin/nginx -c /etc/nginx/nginx.conf%  

Usually, user can’t change files in the/procdirectory, permissions of this files are read-only even for root.

One of the exceptions is the/proc/sysdirectory. Manual tuning of the kernel parameters is carried out by changing the contents of files in this directory. For example,/proc/sys/netcontains settings related to network traffic management.

Example of disabling ipv6 on a running system usingechocommand:

ip addr | grep inet6 | wc -l

echo 1 > /proc/sys/net/ipv6/conf/all/disable_ipv6

ip addr | grep inet6 | wc -l                      

It’s important, that this way of changing kernel parameters works only while the system is running. Settings won’t be saved after reboot of the system, because/procfiles are computed on request.

Note that it’s not recommended to change kernel optins in the/proc/sysusing text editors. This action may violate the integrity of the file.

Another way to change kernel parameters is thesysctlutility. An examplesysctloutput of all parameters that can be changed:

sysctl -a 

Example of enabling ipv6 on a running system usingsysctl:

ip addr | grep inet6 | wc -l

sysctl -w net.ipv6.conf.all.disable_ipv6=0  
net.ipv6.conf.all.disable_ipv6 = 0

ip addr | grep inet6 | wc -l

For a permanent effect, it need to specify parameters to be changed in/etc/sysctl.conf(symlink to/etc/sysctl.d/99-sysctl.conf) or in one of the following directories:


Thesysctlcommand with-pkey can be used to immediately apply the contents of all listed files.


sysfsis a virtual filesystem, usually mounted on/sys. Contains symbolic links to hardware related parameters. Doesn’t have it’s ownsysctl. Sub filesystems are also mounted on/sys/*.

mount | grep sys 
sysfs on /sys type sysfs (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime)
securityfs on /sys/kernel/security type securityfs (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime)
tmpfs on /sys/fs/cgroup type tmpfs (ro,nosuid,nodev,noexec,mode=755)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/systemd type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,xattr,release_agent=/usr/lib/systemd/systemd-cgroups-agent,name=systemd)
pstore on /sys/fs/pstore type pstore (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/devices type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,devices)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/net_cls,net_prio type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,net_prio,net_cls)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu,cpuacct type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,cpuacct,cpu)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/memory type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,memory)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/pids type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,pids)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/perf_event type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,perf_event)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/hugetlb type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,hugetlb)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/cpuset type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,cpuset)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/blkio type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,blkio)
cgroup on /sys/fs/cgroup/freezer type cgroup (rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,freezer)
configfs on /sys/kernel/config type configfs (rw,relatime)
systemd-1 on /proc/sys/fs/binfmt_misc type autofs (rw,relatime,fd=30,pgrp=1,timeout=0,minproto=5,maxproto=5,direct,pipe_ino=11284)
debugfs on /sys/kernel/debug type debugfs (rw,relatime)

Example of tuning hardware related parameters through/sys(disabling CPU):

lscpu | grep 'CPU(s)'
CPU(s):                8
On-line CPU(s) list:   0-7

ls /sys/devices/system/cpu/ | grep cpu

echo 0 > /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpu1/online

dmesg | grep 'CPU 1'
[764966.775449] smpboot: CPU 1 is now offline

lscpu | grep 'CPU(s)'
CPU(s):                8
On-line CPU(s) list:   0,2-7
Off-line CPU(s) list:  1
NUMA node0 CPU(s):     0,2-7


The simplest way to set recommended parameters for a particular usage profile is theTunedutility. To list all profiles:

tuned-adm list

All profile settings are in the/usr/lib/tuned/directory. For example, a desktopTunedprofile:

cat /usr/lib/tuned/descktop/tuned.conf
# tuned configuration

summary=Optimize for the desktop use-case

Categories: Linux