[erlang-questions] Thoughts about server abstraction and process management

Robert Virding rvirding@REDACTED
Thu Mar 26 07:38:26 CET 2009

2009/3/25 Ulf Wiger <ulf.wiger@REDACTED>

> zambal wrote:
> >
> > So I was wondering if there ever have been any ideas
>  > about process management like how memory is managed in
>  > garbage collected languages?
> > I don't know anything about the internals of garbage
>  > collectors, but I can imagine that something like
>  > reference counted Pids could work: as soon as the last
>  > reference to a Pid in an Erlang node is cleared by
> > the garbage collector and there's still a process
>  > active with that Pid, it should be pretty safe to kill it.
> I can recall that the idea has been discussed in the past,
> but for better or for worse, it's rather too late for that.
> It would probably break existing code in gruesome ways.

One difficult problem to solve if you do something like this is handling
references to pids from other nodes. As they can more or less be freely
passed around amongst external nodes there is no possibility to keep track
of them, or to keep track of which processes may, or may not, be referenced.

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