Is swap really needed when RAM's aplenty

Gregory Hosler ghosler at
Wed Aug 18 23:53:26 UTC 2010

Hash: SHA1

On 08/18/2010 07:00 PM, Sam Varshavchik wrote:
> I'll probably have a new server with 16 gigs of RAM on the way, soon.
> With this amount of RAM being sufficient, do I really need a swap partition set
> up? I do understand that a swap partition is needed for hibernation, but this
> server does not need to hibernate.

If the memory gets fragged and the kernel wants to defrag, e.g. for a memory
request from an application, in order to defrag any "dirty" data portions (those
pages that have been written to), the kernel *requires* there to be swap.
Otherwise there is no place to write the dirty pages out, in order to read them
in elsewhere.

code pages, of course, can just be conveniently "forgotten", and re-read back in
on demand. Data must be written to swap. Removing swap, removes this possibility
from the kernel. This might not be a problem for you. It depends upon your work
load and their memory footprint requirements.

- -Greg

- -- 

Please also check the log file at "/dev/null" for additional information.
                (from /var/log/Xorg.setup.log)

| Greg Hosler                                   ghosler at    |
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