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movq
Long time nixers
Dear UNIX diary,

today, I exploited memory overcommit and copy-on-write.

I have a program that reads data and stores it in a circular buffer. That is, when the buffer is "full", new data is simply stored at the beginning of the buffer, thus overwriting old data. The program just keeps the data in ordinary memory, i.e. it does not save it on a hard drive or something else.

This program can be fed with arbitrary data, for example raw audio data. This means you keep recording and recording, but you will always only have ~50MB (or the last ten minutes) of audio data available.

So far, so good.

What I want to do next is send my program a signal and it shall save the buffer as an OGG/Vorbis file. Meanwhile, I still want to keep recording to the very same buffer -- without any interruption. Of course, as new data arrives, old data will be overwritten, so I must make a copy of my buffer prior to encoding it. Creating that copy could be a problem if the original buffer is, say, 80% of my total RAM.

Enter: Kernel magic.

Okay, I have a process with some allocated memory. I can solve my problem by simply doing a fork(). The child process will be a clone of the parent -- including its memory. The child can then encode the audio data as OGG/Vorbis while the parent continues to record new data.

What's awesome about this is that the kernel does not really create a copy of the memory[1]. Both processes refer to the same memory pages. Only when one process writes to a "shared" page (the parent does this when recording new audio data), a real copy will be created. Thus, only that particular data in my circular buffer which arrives while I'm encoding needs to be copied. This only amounts to a fraction of the total buffer size, which allows me to do the whole operation even with very large buffers.

And, I, myself, don't have to implement any of this. The kernel takes care of everything.


[1]: At least, Linux behaves this way by default. Last time I checked, FreeBSD and OpenBSD did the same thing.


Messages In This Thread
UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 18-08-2014, 11:03 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 18-08-2014, 11:37 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by cjm - 18-08-2014, 12:01 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 18-08-2014, 12:18 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by cjm - 18-08-2014, 02:11 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 19-08-2014, 12:50 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 19-08-2014, 01:18 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pizzaroll1 - 19-08-2014, 02:15 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by vompatti - 19-08-2014, 04:20 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pizzaroll1 - 19-08-2014, 07:53 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 20-08-2014, 12:54 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by vompatti - 20-08-2014, 06:33 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 21-08-2014, 04:53 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by DotDev - 21-08-2014, 07:50 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by shtols - 21-08-2014, 12:55 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 21-08-2014, 01:22 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 23-08-2014, 06:55 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 23-08-2014, 07:27 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 24-08-2014, 04:39 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 24-08-2014, 11:24 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pizzaroll1 - 25-08-2014, 12:37 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 26-08-2014, 03:38 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by cjm - 27-08-2014, 12:48 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 28-08-2014, 11:11 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 30-08-2014, 01:47 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by kirby - 30-08-2014, 09:56 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 30-08-2014, 11:22 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 09-09-2014, 12:21 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 04-11-2014, 12:27 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by berk - 10-09-2014, 09:12 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 10-09-2014, 10:53 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 10-09-2014, 11:51 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 11-09-2014, 11:18 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 12-09-2014, 08:08 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 17-09-2014, 10:51 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pizzaroll1 - 17-09-2014, 01:07 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by hades - 17-09-2014, 07:47 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 18-09-2014, 12:37 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 18-09-2014, 10:51 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 18-09-2014, 12:18 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by earsplit - 19-09-2014, 02:23 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by vompatti - 20-09-2014, 11:52 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pizzaroll1 - 20-09-2014, 08:00 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by srp - 21-09-2014, 02:09 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by kirby - 21-09-2014, 03:25 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 30-09-2014, 01:00 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 08-10-2014, 10:31 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by cjm - 09-10-2014, 04:14 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by kirby - 09-10-2014, 08:15 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by JerrySpringerIsMyDad - 24-10-2014, 10:03 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 28-10-2014, 10:38 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 28-10-2014, 01:18 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by neeasade - 09-01-2015, 10:44 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 09-01-2015, 02:04 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 19-02-2015, 07:05 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 19-02-2015, 04:55 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 20-02-2015, 11:49 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 28-04-2015, 04:13 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by bsdkeith - 29-04-2015, 05:01 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 29-04-2015, 10:29 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 29-04-2015, 03:09 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by greduan - 02-05-2015, 09:58 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by cjm - 07-05-2015, 11:14 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 07-05-2015, 12:20 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by neeasade - 24-07-2015, 11:10 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 25-07-2015, 08:44 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Houseoftea - 25-07-2015, 11:32 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by movq - 26-07-2015, 03:52 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 27-07-2015, 02:02 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 24-08-2015, 07:07 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 25-08-2015, 10:38 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rocx - 30-08-2015, 11:40 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 31-08-2015, 04:40 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 31-08-2015, 07:30 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 03-09-2015, 05:34 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by kirby - 03-09-2015, 06:57 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 10-09-2015, 11:30 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 14-09-2015, 03:45 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by darthlukan - 14-09-2015, 02:53 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by dkeg - 15-09-2015, 07:49 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by darthlukan - 05-10-2015, 03:03 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 05-10-2015, 05:00 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by apk - 06-10-2015, 02:41 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Mafia - 06-10-2015, 09:33 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by kirby - 12-10-2015, 03:04 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 13-10-2015, 08:37 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 13-10-2015, 09:38 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 13-10-2015, 10:55 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 13-10-2015, 11:18 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 15-10-2015, 01:34 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by darthlukan - 15-10-2015, 04:44 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 15-10-2015, 06:05 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 15-10-2015, 06:58 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by darthlukan - 16-10-2015, 02:29 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 16-10-2015, 10:09 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by darthlukan - 19-10-2015, 02:10 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 20-10-2015, 02:05 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by darthlukan - 20-10-2015, 02:28 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by thetornainbow - 20-10-2015, 08:52 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Houseoftea - 20-10-2015, 09:11 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 20-10-2015, 12:18 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by darthlukan - 21-10-2015, 02:31 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 30-11-2015, 07:08 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by apk - 30-11-2015, 08:49 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 01-12-2015, 08:24 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by apk - 01-12-2015, 11:43 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by arcetera - 02-12-2015, 08:57 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 03-12-2015, 02:20 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 03-12-2015, 11:32 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by dcat - 07-12-2015, 06:16 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 11-12-2015, 07:30 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 11-12-2015, 03:04 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 13-12-2015, 08:31 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 13-12-2015, 03:22 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by strang3quark - 13-12-2015, 03:57 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rocx - 13-12-2015, 04:37 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Wildefyr - 13-12-2015, 07:29 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 14-12-2015, 01:37 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by movq - 14-12-2015, 12:44 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 14-12-2015, 12:56 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 14-12-2015, 01:24 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by movq - 19-12-2015, 03:26 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 20-12-2015, 05:02 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by movq - 20-12-2015, 08:13 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 20-12-2015, 10:21 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 20-12-2015, 03:46 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by movq - 22-12-2015, 03:27 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by XcelQ - 24-01-2016, 01:32 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 26-01-2016, 02:17 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by XcelQ - 28-01-2016, 03:17 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rain1 - 19-04-2016, 08:28 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by josuah - 22-04-2016, 05:45 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by movq - 07-05-2016, 01:34 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rocx - 16-05-2016, 02:21 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 10-06-2016, 01:11 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 14-09-2016, 01:12 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 14-09-2016, 11:36 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 14-09-2016, 11:58 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 31-01-2017, 09:27 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rocx - 18-02-2017, 02:17 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by fre d die - 15-03-2017, 06:13 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rocx - 15-03-2017, 07:07 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by robotchaos - 07-04-2017, 02:13 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by evbo - 08-04-2017, 03:00 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 08-04-2017, 08:30 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 09-04-2017, 04:56 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by robotchaos - 10-04-2017, 03:56 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 10-04-2017, 04:03 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by robotchaos - 10-04-2017, 04:22 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 10-04-2017, 04:25 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by josuah - 11-04-2017, 09:19 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 11-04-2017, 09:39 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by evbo - 18-04-2017, 02:20 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by robotchaos - 18-04-2017, 03:43 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by nas - 12-06-2017, 09:33 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Tmplt - 12-07-2017, 02:00 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 13-07-2017, 03:12 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 20-10-2017, 03:12 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Houseoftea - 04-01-2018, 08:40 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rocx - 05-01-2018, 02:04 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Tmplt - 21-01-2018, 10:02 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 22-01-2018, 08:14 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Tmplt - 22-01-2018, 01:02 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by mrtn - 22-01-2018, 04:47 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 22-01-2018, 04:53 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 31-03-2018, 09:22 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 15-05-2018, 12:17 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 20-09-2018, 07:07 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by xero - 25-10-2018, 01:27 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by venam - 26-10-2018, 01:08 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by Steph - 28-10-2018, 05:23 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by rocx - 04-11-2018, 01:48 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by jkl - 05-11-2018, 10:18 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 06-11-2018, 09:06 AM
RE: UNIX Diary - by anthk - 10-01-2019, 12:20 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by pranomostro - 10-01-2019, 04:38 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by gaak - 14-01-2019, 09:47 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by josuah - 10-12-2019, 08:39 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 15-05-2020, 12:19 PM
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RE: UNIX Diary - by seninha - 08-07-2020, 09:34 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by movq - 28-09-2020, 03:19 PM
RE: UNIX Diary - by z3bra - 29-09-2020, 11:00 AM
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