[vbox-dev] SVN builds Leaving zombie processes on shutdown of guest

Perry Halbert phalbert at cox.net
Tue Jun 4 15:03:00 GMT 2013

A great big thanks.

As many guests as I open and close daily it was getting rather 
annoying.  I usually have two that stay running 24/7 but to clear the 
zombies I had to save them and shut the manager down.

On 06/04/2013 09:58 AM, Klaus Espenlaub wrote:
> Hi Perry,
> On 04.06.2013 14:23, Perry Halbert wrote:
>> Good day Klaus,
>> Strange indeed.  As I said I didn't notice this before but can't promise
>> exactly when It started.  I don't usually need to trace why excessive
>> idle CPU ticks are present.  I did check the released (4.2.12) and it
>> does not produce this behavior.
> Not strange any more after finding the cause, as usual. This was a 
> very well hidden regression which sneaked in when adding the default 
> VM frontend setting in trunk (which included simplifying the frontend 
> handling). It resulted in an empty string being stored in the session 
> type, which means "we didn't start this client process", suppressing 
> the process reaping. Now it's clear why it only happened for GUI VMs 
> and not headless ones...
>> I do have backups of my builds and can if needed to see where it
>> started. (at least to the middle of March)
> No need, was easy enough to find.
> Will be in the repository soon...
> Klaus
>> Question if I may,  what is the purpose of the %U in the startup command
>> (VirtualBox %U)
>> Perry
>> On 06/04/2013 04:06 AM, Klaus Espenlaub wrote:
>>> Hi Perry,
>>> On 03.06.2013 23:10, Perry Halbert wrote:
>>>> More research on this shows that using VBoxHeadless -s <guest> or 
>>>> shift
>>>> start from the main manager does not produce the zombies.
>>>> Only normal starting from the main manager or shortcut does.
>>> Very very strange, I'm not aware of any intentional code changes in 
>>> this
>>> area for approx. a year, and actually I have no idea why VBoxHeadless
>>> processes would consistently behave differently. The distinction should
>>> be "VM started through the API" (i.e. anything in the GUI, and
>>> VBoxManage startvm) or "VM started directly" (i.e.
>>> VirtualBox/VBoxHeadless/VBoxSDL --startvm foo). In the latter case
>>> VBoxSVC is not the parent and thus isn't responsible for waiting for 
>>> the
>>> process exit result.
>>> I can reproduce, so will investigate what's causing this behavior 
>>> change.
>>> Thanks for letting us know...
>>> Klaus
>>>> On 06/01/2013 11:56 AM, Perry Halbert wrote:
>>>>> Strange behavior the last few weeks.
>>>>> Stopping ( even saved state ) a guest leaves a zombie process on the
>>>>> host.
>>>>> Each new start and it uses a new pid and the zombie is still there.
>>>>> Stop all guests and the main manager and all processes including the
>>>>> zombie processes finally clear.
>>>>> Host = Ubuntu 12.04 LTS guest = any.
>>>>> USER       PID %CPU %MEM    VSZ   RSS TTY      STAT START   TIME 
>>>>> perry     9538  6.0  0.0      0     0 ?        Z 11:36   0:34
>>>>> [VirtualBox] <defunct>
>>>>> perry     9934  4.3  0.0      0     0 ?        Z 11:37   0:22
>>>>> [VirtualBox] <defunct>
>>>>> Normally I would not have seen this but the processor was doing work
>>>>> when it should have been idle. I have never seen a zombie process
>>>>> using CPU ticks before.  Wait long enough and the %CPU will finally
>>>>> get to zero but it seems to take like 20 to 30 minutes to do so.

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://www.virtualbox.org/pipermail/vbox-dev/attachments/20130604/15b64fbb/attachment.html>

More information about the vbox-dev mailing list