sysctl: Linux System Tweaking

sysctl is a command-lin tool to modify kernel parameters at runtime in Linux.

ref:
http://man7.org/linux/man-pages/man8/sysctl.8.html

Usage

List All Parameters

$ sudo sysctl -a
$ sudo sysctl -a | grep tcp

The parameters available are those listed under /proc/sys/.

$ cat /proc/sys/net/core/somaxconn
1024

Show the Entry of a Specified Parameter

$ sudo sysctl net.core.somaxconn
net.core.somaxconn = 1024

### Show the Value of a Specified Parameter

```console
$ sysctl -n net.core.somaxconn
1024

Change a Specified Parameter

# Elasticsearch
$ sysctl -w vm.max_map_count = 262143

# Redis
$ sysctl -w vm.overcommit_memory = 1

ref:
https://www.elastic.co/guide/en/elasticsearch/reference/current/vm-max-map-count.html
https://redis.io/topics/admin

Persistence

`sysctl -w` only modify parameters at runtime, and they would be set to default values after the system is restarted. You must write those settings in `/etc/sysctl.conf` to persistent them.

# Do less swapping
vm.swappiness = 10
vm.dirty_ratio = 60
vm.dirty_background_ratio = 2

# Prevents SYN DOS attacks. Applies to ipv6 as well, despite name.
net.ipv4.tcp_syncookies = 1

# Prevents ip spoofing.
net.ipv4.conf.default.rp_filter = 1
net.ipv4.conf.all.rp_filter = 1

# Only groups within this id range can use ping.
net.ipv4.ping_group_range=999 59999

# Redirects can potentially be used to maliciously alter hosts routing tables.
net.ipv4.conf.all.accept_redirects = 0
net.ipv4.conf.all.secure_redirects = 1
net.ipv6.conf.all.accept_redirects = 0

# The source routing feature includes some known vulnerabilities.
net.ipv4.conf.all.accept_source_route = 0
net.ipv6.conf.all.accept_source_route = 0

# See RFC 1337
net.ipv4.tcp_rfc1337 = 1

# Enable IPv6 Privacy Extensions (see RFC4941 and RFC3041)
net.ipv6.conf.default.use_tempaddr = 2
net.ipv6.conf.all.use_tempaddr = 2

# Restarts computer after 120 seconds after kernel panic
kernel.panic = 120

# Users should not be able to create soft or hard links to files which they do not own. This mitigates several privilege escalation vulnerabilities.
fs.protected_hardlinks = 1
fs.protected_symlinks = 1

ref:
https://blog.runcloud.io/how-to-secure-your-linux-server/
https://www.percona.com/blog/2019/02/25/mysql-challenge-100k-connections/
https://www.nginx.com/blog/tuning-nginx/

Activate parameters from the configuration file.

$ sudo sysctl -p

Troubleshooting

OS error code 24: Too many open files

$ sudo vim /etc/sysctl.conf
fs.file-max = 601017

$ sudo sysctl -p

$ sudo vim /etc/security/limits.d/nofile.conf
* soft nofile 65535
* hard nofile 65535
root soft nofile 65535
root hard nofile 65535

$ ulimit -n 65535

OS error code 99: Cannot assign requested address

For MySQL. Because there's no available local network ports left. You might need to set `net.ipv4.tcp_tw_reuse = 1` instead of `net.ipv4.tcp_tw_recycle = 1`.

$ sudo vim /etc/sysctl.conf
net.ipv4.tcp_tw_reuse = 1

$ sudo sysctl -p

ref:
https://www.percona.com/blog/2014/12/08/what-happens-when-your-application-cannot-open-yet-another-connection-to-mysql/
https://stackoverflow.com/questions/6426253/tcp-tw-reuse-vs-tcp-tw-recycle-which-to-use-or-both

Parameters are missing from `sysctl -a` or `/proc/sys`

Sometimes you might find some parameters are not in `sysctl -a` or `/proc/sys`.

You can find them in `/sys`:

$ echo "never" > /sys/kernel/mm/transparent_hugepage/enabled
$ echo "never" > /sys/kernel/mm/transparent_hugepage/defrag

$ cat /sys/kernel/mm/transparent_hugepage/enabled

To persistent them:

$ vim /etc/rc.local
if test -f /sys/kernel/mm/transparent_hugepage/enabled; then
   echo "never" > /sys/kernel/mm/transparent_hugepage/enabled
fi
if test -f /sys/kernel/mm/transparent_hugepage/defrag; then
   echo "never" > /sys/kernel/mm/transparent_hugepage/defrag
fi

$ systemctl enable rc-local

If /etc/rc.local doesn't exist, create one and run chmod 644 /etc/rc.local.

ref:
https://redis.io/topics/admin
https://unix.stackexchange.com/questions/99154/disable-transparent-hugepages

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