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A rather conspicuous claim from a man working for an OS vendor that doesn't have that call.Personally I think fork is a nice enough call and actually an advantage to have.
Why do the same beautiful structures occur in so many different contexts?
There is clearly far more going on here than we currently understand.
For example, I am interested in the use of harmonic analysis in sphere packing or representation theory in computational algebra. You can also download my research papers directly from the ar Xiv (in order by when they were last updated).
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The communication between the two might be sockets, or shm, but it could be as simple as the cruncher receiving jobs on stdin and shipping notifications on stdout. Besides, I'm not arguing that fork() has to be the _only_ way to launch processes; it's entirely OK to _also_ have a spawn()-like interface for the 'simple case' where you don't want to juggle fds, ulimits, creds, etc., as long as fork() is still supported for the hard cases. This single process can be very large, tens of gigabytes in size.
Modern JVMs are quite efficient at managing large heaps, so this is desirable. If you use fork() exec then you're looking at duplicating the entire working set of the application server.You could even stall fork() calls elsewhere in the system, rather than immediately returning -ENOMEM, if the system thinks its memory pressure is due only to such short-term reservations.This only leads to problems in the case where you have a single-process behemoth with huge amounts of writable anonymous pages; also known as a badly-designed program.My office is on the 12th floor, but the receptionist is on floor M, so you should check in there before proceeding to the 12th floor.Although I work in industry, I have an active interest in teaching. in mathematics in 2000 from Harvard, where my advisor was Noam Elkies.Fun fact: you can share memory between distinct processes, by any of several means. Which is but one of the many reasons you shouldn't build a gigantic monolithic application server in the first place.Also, I'm not suggesting spinning off a separate process to handle each request (the xinetd model); just splitting up the workload into separate processes doing different aspects of the job. The Unix system philosophy is like the Westminster system of government.As the designers and implementers of operating systems, we should acknowledge that fork’s continued existence as a first-class OS primitive holds back systems research, and deprecate it.As educators, we should teach fork as a historical artifact, and not the first process creation mechanism students encounter.Your "large amount of cached data" could have been stored in memory allocated with mmap(MAP_PRIVATE | MAP_ANON), instead of regular malloc(), and then it wouldn't show up in the child after fork(). Typically you have a server that runs some kind of service.There doesn't need to be any RPC involved, the data-cruncher can & should be a child process forked from the driver. It's a single process - it makes sharing data between requests very easy.