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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

CPU / Process Scheduling

CPU scheduling is the basis of multi-programmed operating systems. By switching the CPU among processes, the operating system can make the computer more productive. A multiprogramming operating system allows more than one process to be loaded into the executable memory at a time and for the loaded process to share the CPU using time-multiplexing.

Goals for Scheduling :
* Utilization/Efficiency: keep the CPU busy 100% of the time with useful work.
* Throughput: maximize the number of jobs processed per hour.
* Turnaround time: from the time of submission to the time of completion, minimize the time batch users must wait for output.
* Waiting time: Minimize the waiting time i.e. sum of times spent in ready queue.
* Response Time: time from submission till the first response is produced, minimize response time for interactive users.
* Fairness: make sure each process gets a fair share of the CPU.

Some goals can be met by incorporating a notion of priority into a “base” scheduling discipline. Each job in the ready pool has an associated priority value; the scheduler favors jobs with higher priority values.
External priority values:
• imposed on the system from outside.
• reflect external preferences for particular users or tasks.
“All jobs are equal, but some jobs are more equal than others.”
• Example: Unix nice system call to lower priority of a task.
• Example: Urgent tasks in a real-time process control system.

Internal priority: system adjusts priority values internally as as an implementation technique within the scheduler. It improves fairness, resource utilization, freedom from starvation.
• drop priority of jobs consuming more than their share
• boost jobs that already hold resources that are in demand
e.g., internal sleep primitive in Unix kernels
• boost jobs that have starved in the recent past
• typically a continuous, dynamic, readjustment in response to observed conditions and events may be visible and controllable to other parts of the system.

Scheduling policies may be preemptive or non-preemptive.
* Non-Preemptive: Non-preemptive algorithms are designed so that once a process enters the running state(is allowed a process), it is not removed from the processor until it has completed its service time ( or it explicitly yields the processor).
* Preemptive: Preemptive algorithms are driven by the notion of prioritized computation. The process with the highest priority should always be the one currently using the processor. If a process is currently using the processor and a new process with a higher priority enters, the ready list, the process on the processor should be removed and returned to the ready list until it is once again the highest-priority process in the system.

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