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how come i only have a few MBs of physical memory left whenever i'm running linux, my swap space is hardly being used? i got 256MB of RAM. 660MB SWAP. ...
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  1. #1
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    memory


    how come i only have a few MBs of physical memory left whenever i'm running linux, my swap space is hardly being used?

    i got 256MB of RAM. 660MB SWAP.

    i don't have that many applications running. there are daemon threads, but they don't eat much memory. like right now, i only have 2 Mozilla windows open, 1 console, and i just closed bluefish. i did vmstat or free, and it says i only have 18316K free, while my swap usage is only 4k. i have tried to observe this for several days now.

    in other cases, when i have about 3-5 apps running on each of the 3 virtual desktops i have (GIMP, XMMS,BLUEFISH, i've noticed isn't a good idea when these three are up together), the free memory drops to dangeroulsy low levels, like 4096k (isn't this a bit too low?), while swap remains almost untouched.

    is this how linux manages memory, or can i do something about this?
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  2. #2
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    What Distro and Xwindows are you using? i noticed something similar to that when using Gnome with Slackware 9.0 in KDE it was fine though and now i use arch linux with Enlightenment and i hardly use any ram

  3. #3
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    oh, sorry on this. i'm using RedHat 9, KDE for desktop.. . are you saying that this is the desktops fault? i noticed too when i do ps -aux that there are a lot of kdeinit processes running. i've shifted from gnome to kde coz it's better in my opinion. i am using the XWindows that came with the distro. i didn't change or upgrade to any.. .
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  4. #4
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    One idea might be to get into a shell, like bash, and run 'top'. This should produce a realtime list of all your current processes and how much memory they are using. You might consider posting the output here so folks can see what's happening. It's possible to switch some things around so they run in the background and don't take up as much memory.

    I'm sure someone else can fill in the bits I don't know! Odd though, 'cos IMO KDE uses less physical memory than Gnome.
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

  5. #5
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    This thread has answered that question:
    http://www.linuxforums.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=891

  6. #6
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    yeah, this was discussed many times before, if u cant be bothered readign thru the last thread, in short: its suppoed to do that, dont worry.

  7. #7
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    I'm very impressed with your reply Dolda! With that kind of knowledge you should go far
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

  8. #8
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    ok, thanks Dolda. as always, you seem to have all the answers.
    Registered User #345074

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