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Old 04-26-2008, 01:13 AM   #1
jbum
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High Memory Usage


So I've noticed that Linux consumes most of the RAM regardless of how much I'm running and I found some threads in the other distribution threads that the kernel occupies it even though you don't need all of it at the moment.

Is this true? It certainly appears to be so.

If so, what's the best way to see how much of the RAM is actually being utilized? Both top and free show what's used or reserved by the system.
 
Old 04-26-2008, 01:17 AM   #2
duryodhan
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Take for e.g
Quote:
$ free
total used free shared buffers cached
Mem: 1033876 1007592 26284 0 185568 507284
-/+ buffers/cache: 314740 719136
Swap: 0 0 0
as you can see out of 1GB nearly all is used. But when you see the lower row , that is the one that is actually important . over 700MB is free.

linux is smart enough to use that part for caching and buffering. I don't get this attraction of many people to keep RAM free?!?! what wil you do with the free RAM ?!? as long as your performance doesn't degrade and when you open a new app the cache/buffers make way for it , whats the problem??

its not as if a RAM with 700M free consumes less power than one in which all is useD ?
 
Old 04-26-2008, 02:59 AM   #3
jbum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duryodhan View Post
Take for e.g


as you can see out of 1GB nearly all is used. But when you see the lower row , that is the one that is actually important . over 700MB is free.

linux is smart enough to use that part for caching and buffering. I don't get this attraction of many people to keep RAM free?!?! what wil you do with the free RAM ?!? as long as your performance doesn't degrade and when you open a new app the cache/buffers make way for it , whats the problem??

its not as if a RAM with 700M free consumes less power than one in which all is useD ?
thanks for clearing that up. i don't think it's keeping RAM free but knowing the correct numbers. if you wanna diagnose your system, you have to know how to read the data correctly. i think that's why many people ask about this.

anyways, thanks again.
 
Old 04-26-2008, 03:25 AM   #4
syg00
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Go read this for some good background.
 
Old 04-26-2008, 03:45 AM   #5
Pikidalto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duryodhan View Post
...I don't get this attraction of many people to keep RAM free?!?! what wil you do with the free RAM ?!? as long as your performance doesn't degrade and when you open a new app the cache/buffers make way for it , whats the problem??...
For me, it's being able to run World of Warcraft, which takes an enormous amount of RAM to run (well, enormous compared to the small combined 512MB of my RAM cards)-nearly 400MB RAM!! So all the RAM I can get is used in running World of Warcraft. But you are right, when I load my game, Linux clears enough of the Cache and Buffer that the RAM is there when my game needs it.

Though I admit, it was not too long ago (two months to be exact) that I freaked out when I saw all my RAM being used to Buffer/Cache. I thought, "What is this about?! Windoze NEVER used this amount of RAM!!" I went and asked one of Ark's support staff and he explained the whole thing to me. What a relief that Linux clears needed RAM to run my programs!
 
Old 04-26-2008, 11:31 AM   #6
onebuck
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Hi,

The memory full problem can related to why drivers fear that a half a tank of gas is a problem. They feel that the lack of a full tank will be a potential problem so they rush off and fill the tank.

Most people just don't fully understand the kernel and memory management. Most rely on their M$ experience. Which really is a conditioned response because of the way M$ managed the memory and reported the supposedly '%resource'. Poor choice!

I refer you to 'Memory Management' which is part of 'The Linux Kernel'.
 
Old 04-26-2008, 03:46 PM   #7
adriv
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What's the purpose of RAM if you don't use it?
Like mentioned earlier, stop looking at your memory-usage all the time, that's for Windows-users.
 
  


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