Re: Confused: Java6 32-bit vs. 64-bit

Robert Klemme <>
Wed, 02 May 2007 16:29:21 +0200
On 02.05.2007 15:56, Patricia Shanahan wrote:

Hendrik Maryns wrote:

Hash: SHA1

Hi all.

I have this program that does some very memory intense computations
converting logical formulae into tree automata. The automata get that
big that after a while I get OutOfMemoryError. I have this particular
formula that gave me problems the first time I started testing the
program. I then rewrote part of it to make it consume less memory, and
after 6 months of work, that formula still gives problems. However,
just monday, suddenly it managed in computing the formula, with
1.2G of RAM.

However, this only works if I tell Eclipse to use the 32-bit java6 jre,
which I installed additionally to the 64-bit jdk that I use for

More strangely, I cannot reproduce this behavior consistently: the first
few times I tried today, it didn???t manage the formula, with neither
32-bit not 64-bit versions. Now, after some switching around, I get the
same result: the 32-bit jre manages the formula, the 64-bit one

The result is reproducible on the command line.

I also have a 1.5 version 64-bit, which seems to fail as well. And now
that I am in a testing phase, I quickly installed a 32-bit 1.5, which
didn???t manage either.

In short, my question: does anyone have an explanation for this? Are
there some things I can learn from this? Which part of my program
should be tuned, such that maybe it becomes usable with less memory? Etc.

Well, one obvious lesson is that bigger pointers take more space. Why
use a 64 bit JDK if your intended memory allocation is small enough for
a 32 bit one?

Does anyone know the heap management algorithms for the JRE? Some memory
allocation systems can lose space to fragmentation, so that the exact
allocation order can affect the amount of memory used.

I suggest to look into GC related JVM settings, e.g. -XX:NewRatio might

Some more links

Also, in a multi-threaded program the sets of objects that exist
simultaneously can vary from run to run.

The big picture is that your program, as currently constructed, is right
on the edge, and will be very fragile unless you do something drastic to
either increase the available memory or reduce the memory it uses.



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