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Absolute FreeBSD, 2nd Edition by Michael W. Lucas

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sysctl

The sysctl(8) program allows you to peek at the values used by the kernel and, in some cases, to set them. Just to make things more confusing, these values are also sometimes known as sysctls. sysctl is a powerful feature because, in many cases, it will let you solve performance issues without rebuilding the kernel or reconfiguring an application. Unfortunately, this power also gives you the ability to sweep the legs out from under a running program and make your users really, really unhappy.

The sysctl(8) program handles all sysctl operations. Throughout this book, I'll point out how particular sysctls change system behavior, but first, you need to understand sysctls in general. Start by grabbing all the human-visible sysctls on your system ...

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