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RE: What uses swap file?

From: Stephen Lee <Stephen.Lee_at_DTAG.Com>
Date: Thu, 15 May 2003 08:37:33 -0800
Message-ID: <>

In my original post, I had not read the subject, only the body of text. So the reply was only about files.

Even in my life as a sys admin, I never had a need to determine where a program was sitting -- in memory or on a swap partition. So I don't think I can give expert advice on the subject. If you are running out of swap and you want to determine how to solve the problem, the simple answer is to add additional swap partition(s). If there is a program running that uses a lot of memory, then either directly or indirectly (i.e. it's kicking other programs off onto the swap partition), it causes the most swap usage. If the program is something that must run, then too bad.

If it's a case of some dipweed wanting to vi a 20 Gb log file; then you can do something about that!

You can try fiddling with the ps command. This has options to display the real memory size (rss = resident set size), virtual memory size (vsz), and just the size (sz I think). I'm not sure what conclusions you can draw from what you get; if the box is busy, these numbers are constantly changing.

Keep in mind that it might be the case on your box that swap, real memory, and the /tmp filesystem are all one big bucket to the OS. So somebody (the previously mentioned dipweed) stashing a big file on /tmp, can be sucking up swap AND real memory.

Please see the official ORACLE-L FAQ:

Author: Stephen Lee
  INET: Stephen.Lee_at_DTAG.Com

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