php-cgi recycling every couple of minutes causing delays

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I run a fairly busy site with a Wordpress blog and vBulletin forums. I 
recently dumped Apache and and using nginx for everything (which has been 
incredible and I would never go back). I'm using PHP as fastCGI and have a 
wrapper script to start the process. We average about 1,000 concurrent users 
at any given time. Usually anywhere from 800 to 1200+.

This is the script I found to start php-cgi:




echo $! > "$PHP_PID"
This has been working great and PHP hasn't completely died on me yet.

The problem that I'm having is that while viewing TOP, php-cgi seems to die 
and restart about every 2-3 minutes, sometimes as often as every minute. At 
least it restarts itself, but that can take a couple of seconds, causing a 
delay if you happen to be browsing the site during this time.

In the above script, I've tried increasing the PHP_FCGI_MAX_REQUESTS, even 
as high as 1,000,000. I've also tried completely omitting that value. No 
matter what, php-cgi reacts the same way.

I know it needs to recycle itself to prevent memory leaks, but I don't think 
it should be happening that often. Any ideas on how to fix this?

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