[R] memory management

luke-tierney at uiowa.edu luke-tierney at uiowa.edu
Wed Feb 29 20:55:25 CET 2012

On Wed, 29 Feb 2012, Sam Steingold wrote:

>> * Milan Bouchet-Valat <anyvzvyna at pyho.se> [2012-02-29 18:18:50 +0100]:
>> I think you're simply hitting a (terrible) OS limitation. Linux is
>> very often not able to reclaim the memory R has used because it's
>> fragmented.  The OS can only get the pages back if nothing is above
>> them, and most of the time there is data after the object you
>> remove. I'm not able to give you a more precise explanation, but
>> that's apparently a known problem and that's hard to fix.
> compacting garbage collector is our best friend!

Which R does not use because of the problems it would create for
external C/Fortran code on which R heavily relies.

Luke Tierney
Chair, Statistics and Actuarial Science
Ralph E. Wareham Professor of Mathematical Sciences
University of Iowa                  Phone:             319-335-3386
Department of Statistics and        Fax:               319-335-3017
    Actuarial Science
241 Schaeffer Hall                  email:   luke-tierney at uiowa.edu
Iowa City, IA 52242                 WWW:  http://www.stat.uiowa.edu

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