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From André Warnier>
Subject Re: Free Memory vs. Total Memory vs. Max Memory
Date Sat, 18 Feb 2012 11:57:22 GMT
Robinson, Eric wrote:
>> We have many servers that have been running 100-200 instances 
>> of tomcat each for years without any performance problems. 
>> Most of our servers are Linux 8-core machines with 32GB RAM, 
>> with the tomcat instances configured with -Xms16M -Xmx192M. 
>> We also have some Windows servers with 100-150 instances of 
>> tomcat each, most of which are configured with -Xms16M -Xmx64M. 
> To add to the above, we see zero swapping and very low iowait (or disk
> queue lengths in Windows).
You would have saved everyone some time by being a little bit more forward with the above.
Your initial question sounded deceptively beginner-like, which is why you got beginner 

Thanks for sharing the data above in any case.  It provides a future reference point for 
similar enquiries.

Anyway, it sounds like you have at least the possibility of getting plenty of real-world 
data to confirm or disprove you thesis.  Just enabling GC logging at the minimum level on

that instance should be enough to provide a good impression of what's going on at 
different settings of Heap size.
Unless you also know the exact applications and usage of that instance, you may still be 

I also administer a number of Tomcat instances, usually running one single and in 
principle smallish application, always the same, each Tomcat being alone on one of a 
similar set of (Linux) servers.  In most cases, 128 MB Heap is enough and we never see a 
problem.  In a couple of cases however, 512MB Heap is the absolute minimum to provide 
acceptable user-perceived performance.  The difference is not so much in the absolute 
number of users or requests, but in the pattern of usage during the day.  Our favored 
hypothesis is that several hundred employees always return from their coffee breaks at 
exactly the same time.
Just to say that you never know until you measure.

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