Terry J. Reedy added the comment:

Starting longer running tests sooner only make sense if one runs them in 
parallel with -jn.  I just tried installed 64 bit 3.6.1 with -r -j12 (forgot 
-ugui).  Total duration: 108 seconds.  The last to finish was 
test_multiprocessing_spawn after 84 seconds, 5 seconds after the 2nd last.  So 
it started at 24 seconds, when about 150 of 405 tests had finished.  To not be 
a blocker, it needed to start at about 19 seconds, when 120 tests had finished.

I re-ran with 32 bit repository debug build and was not so lucky.  Test 404 
finished at 3:24.  Test_multiprocessing_spawn finished 1:33 later at 4:57, 
after 121 seconds.  It started at 2:57, when about 352 of 405 had finished.  
Test 303 (3/4the) finished at 2:41, 16 seconds earlier.

Conclusion: the 3/4 restriction will help, but is insufficient to really 
balance process loads.

nosy: +terry.reedy

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