[erlang-questions] Rules regarding the refcount of binaries

John Haugeland <>
Wed Jun 3 21:36:35 CEST 2009

> The issue, as I understand it, is that if you extract small
> binaries out of bigger ones, the smaller binaries will be
> represented as "sub-binaries" pointing into the larger ones.

Oh, ok, so it's just a question of the binary only freeing when all
handles into parts of it are freed too?  So I can go ahead and use
binaries like I used to?  Word, that's much nicer; the pattern
matching I'm doing on the binaries is well controlled, and I don't
retain fragments, so for me it's a non-issue.

I would like to request that that information be considered for
promotion into the manual.

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