Re: Can anything be done to reduce memory usage?
- From: Miguel de Icaza <miguel nuclecu unam mx>
- To: Kevin Cowtan <cowtan yorvic york ac uk>
- Cc: gnome-list gnome org
- Subject: Re: Can anything be done to reduce memory usage?
- Date: 02 Sep 1999 16:47:24 -0500
> intuitively very simple: for example, the resident size of the little
> pplet which prints the time and date on the panel is 3Mb, and the
> pager/task list applet is similar. And of course, gmc takes about 5Mb
> just to maintain the desktop icons. I could kill all of these, but then
> I may as well go back to KDE.
Sizes are not what ps makes them look like.
Here is a small document that might help you:
Understanding Memory usage in GNOME.
Miguel de Icaza (firstname.lastname@example.org)
People usually look at the memory sizes for the processes and
misinterpret the information. This is a common mistake.
When talking about memory usage and the reports you get from the
operating system, you need to keep in mind the following terms and
what they mean:
SIZE This is the address space seen by the process. If the
process maps 65 megs of memory, the address space of
the process will be reported as 65 megs of memory.
Even if only 100k of memory are actually used.
This bit of information is not usually very useful and
this is what most people believe is the actual memory
usage of a program: it is not.
RSS This is the "Resident Set Size". This is the amount
of memory actually resident on memory. This is a
better computation of what is actually loaded in
This does not include any piece of code that have been
So, for example, if you have a program that uses 100k
of memory and the operating system discards or swaps
40k of memory, the RSS will be 60k.
The RSS includes both the memory which is unique to
this process and the memory shared with other
processes. In most modern Unix systems, a large part
of this accounts for the memory used by shared
libraries. So it usually includes the ammount of
memory that is used by other processes for the code
that is shared: The libc is usually taken into
GNOME uses many shared libraries (this makes the
applications share more memory).
SHARE This is the amount of memory from the RSS that is
shared with other applications.
So, the actual memory used uniquely by an application is RSS - SHARE.
If two programs use library "A", then the process would also be
"responsible" for A/2 of the memory, but there are many variations
(which pieces of the library each program uses) that make this
A good approximation is thus "RSS - SHARE".
The file manager in GNOME for example uses the following libraries:
libgnorba.so.27 => /opt/gnome/lib/libgnorba.so.27 (0x40007000)
libORBitCosNaming.so.0 =>/opt/gnome/lib/libORBitCosNaming.so.0 (0x40011000)
libORBit.so.0 => /opt/gnome/lib/libORBit.so.0 (0x4001a000)
libIIOP.so.0 => /opt/gnome/lib/libIIOP.so.0 (0x4007c000)
libORBitutil.so.0 => /opt/gnome/lib/libORBitutil.so.0(0x40086000)
GNOME graphical libraries:
libgnomeui.so.32 => /opt/gnome/lib/libgnomeui.so.32(0x40089000)
libart_lgpl.so.2 => /opt/gnome/lib/libart_lgpl.so.2(0x4013b000)
libgdk_imlib.so.1 => /opt/gnome/lib/libgdk_imlib.so.1(0x40149000)
Session management libraries:
libSM.so.6 => /usr/X11R6/lib/libSM.so.6 (0x4016a000)
libICE.so.6 => /usr/X11R6/lib/libICE.so.6 (0x40173000)
libgtk-1.2.so.0 => /usr/local/lib/libgtk-1.2.so.0 (0x40188000)
libgdk-1.2.so.0 => /usr/local/lib/libgdk-1.2.so.0 (0x402a3000)
libgmodule-1.2.so.0 => /usr/local/lib/libgmodule-1.2.so.0(0x402d5000)
libglib-1.2.so.0 => /usr/local/lib/libglib-1.2.so.0(0x403c9000)
libXext.so.6 => /usr/X11R6/lib/libXext.so.6 (0x402d9000)
libX11.so.6 => /usr/X11R6/lib/libX11.so.6 (0x402e7000)
libz.so.1 => /usr/lib/libz.so.1 (0x404a4000)
libgnome.so.32 => /opt/gnome/lib/libgnome.so.32 (0x403a3000)
libgnomesupport.so.0 => /opt/gnome/lib/libgnomesupport.so.0(0x403b5000)
libdb.so.2 => /lib/libdb.so.2 (0x403bb000)
Standard Unix libraries:
libdl.so.2 => /lib/libdl.so.2 (0x403ea000)
libm.so.6 => /lib/libm.so.6 (0x4038a000)
libc.so.6 => /lib/libc.so.6 (0x403ff000)
/lib/ld-linux.so.2 => /lib/ld-linux.so.2 (0x2aaaa000)
File manager libraries:
libext2fs.so.2 => /lib/libext2fs.so.2 (0x403ed000)
libcom_err.so.2 => /lib/libcom_err.so.2 (0x403fd000)
So, even if it does not use all of the code, the "SIZE" will reflect
the maximal size the program would be using if it used all of those
The more libraries we use the bigger the SIZE goes, even if this does
not reflect the actual memory usage.
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