> My best theory so far:
> malloc()/free() actually use mmap()/munmap() for large allocations.
> mallopt(3) tells me that [...]

Many things I don't grab at first go :-)

Last night I did a long git-bisect of the kernel and was able to
pinpoint a change in the Linux memory management as cause (see my
pre-prepared email I just sent).

Would that fit into your theory?

> You could try to gather some data on this by  [...]
Before I dive into that maybe you could throw a quick look at the
causing Kernel change (which reading from the words _could_ be related)
if this fits into the picture?

If yes, I'm happy to try to assist you in further pinning this issue down!
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