Linux kills a process when when starving memory

I recently observed a rather strange problem with randomly dying Java processes under heavy load. The vital clue to this problem was hidden in /var/log/messages as shown below:

It turns out that Linux may decide to kill a process when the system runs out of memory. It may make sense to cap the memory limit (-Xmx) of any Java processes running on the system to a value that sums up below the server’s available memory.

Jaan Angerpikk explained this problem in great detail, follow the link below to read more on this matter.

Out of memory: Kill process or sacrifice child

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