I have not seen this problem. However, AIX like most other Unix-based systems, will try to buffer the entire file. In addition, AIX, like the other Unix-based systems, should have swap space equal to or slightly greater than the amount of physical memory (RAM) on the box. This is a must! Otherwise it could cause problems when the box needs to go to the paging area.
My suggestions: Increase the swap area to the IBM-recommended size of at least the size of physical memory. Better configure the swap area 1.5 times the amount of physical memory.
If you do what I recommend, you would have a swap space size of 15 GB for a 10 GB of RAM.
Also, how many stripes are you using for the database dump? How many devices does the database have? For a 12 GB database, I would recommend at a minimum 8 stripes for a standard JFS. For JFS with large file enabled or for JFS2, you should probably go for between 4 and 8 stripes for best performance.
Having said that, based upon the information provided, I suggest you increase the swap space to 15 GB and the number of database dump stripes to 8.
This was first published in November 2004