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The Worst Page-Replacement Policy Kunal Agrawal1

Summary: The Worst Page-Replacement Policy
Kunal Agrawal1
, Michael A. Bender2
, and Jeremy T. Fineman1
MIT, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794-4400, USA
Abstract. In this paper, we consider the question: what is the worst
possible page-replacement strategy? Our goal is to devise an online strat-
egy that has the highest possible fraction of misses as compared to the
worst offline strategy. We show that there is no deterministic, online page-
replacement strategy that is competitive with the worst offline strategy.
We give a randomized strategy based on the "most-recently-used" heuris-
tic, and show that this is the worst possible online page-replacement
1 Introduction
Since the early days of computer science, thousands of papers have been written
on how to optimize various components of the memory hierarchy. In these papers
a recurrent question (at least four decades old) is the following: Which page-


Source: Agrawal, Kunal - Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Washington University in St. Louis
Bender, Michael - Department of Computer Science, SUNY at Stony Brook
Leiserson, Charles E. - Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory & Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)


Collections: Computer Technologies and Information Sciences