[rescue] Mozilla Firefox

Dave McGuire mcguire at neurotica.com
Mon Apr 26 19:36:50 CDT 2004

On Apr 26, 2004, at 8:01 PM, Charles Shannon Hendrix wrote:
>>>> And, at least we know Java's GC works.
>>> Do we?  If it works, then it must be improperly written code in the
>>> libraries that seems to make Java programs leak/eat memory.
>>> No thanks.
>>   Ok, now I'm hearing the "twilight zone" theme again.  I'm sorry man,
>> but I've now reached the conclusion that you don't know squat about
>> Java. :-(
> That's your option of course, but I can't imagine why.

   Because you are saying things that directly contradict my experience 
and firsthand observations.  I also want to be clear that I mean no 

> The problems of the Java garbage collector are widely discussed and
> there has been research on fixing it for years, a lot of that done by
> IBM.

   Yes, and Microsoft "widely discusses" Linux costing more than 
Windows, despite the fact that it is free.  People discuss all sorts of 
things.  My Java-based systems created & destroyed objects damn near 
constantly, and they never grow in memory.  How do you account for 

>   The early 1.0 and 1.1 Java GCs were particularly bad, fragmenting
> severely and frequently failing to deallocate unreferenced objects.

   Sure...and that was, what, eight years ago?  I don't know of anyone 
still running 1.2, much less 1.0 and 1.1.  Everything is buggy in its 
early releases...let's leave the past in the past.

> If I observe a Java program leaking memory, it has to be the libraries
> (classes) if it isn't the garbage collector.  Well, it could be the JVM
> itself I suppose, but I'd think that is less likely than the GC or the
> program code.

   It could also be memory fragmentation as was recently discussed in a 
different context.

> If you'll spend 15 minutes with Google, you'll find quite a bit of
> information on problems with Java garbage collection, both in how the 
> GC
> works, and how people (mis)use it.

   I'm certainly interested in hearing of other peoples' experiences 
with it, but frankly, if I'm going to discuss it with any degree of 
authority, I'm going to talk about *my* experiences with it.  And *my* 
Java-based systems didn't leak memory.  I don't know what those guys 
were doing...all that information is second-hand.

> I run Java 1.4.1 right now, the Sun distribution for Linux x86.
> It's possible the default setup is just bad, but I can't usually run
> more than one Java application at a time.

   Sounds like the rather infamous Linux/x86 context switching 
performance problems to me.


Dave McGuire          "PC users only know two 'solutions'...
Cape Coral, FL          reboot and upgrade."    -Jonathan Patschke

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