[erlang-questions] VM ends with 'killed'

Gordon Guthrie <>
Tue Mar 15 09:08:56 CET 2011


You were all right.

Basically the old system was badly behaved and would issue an
extravagant demand for memory to be rebuffed by the O/S and then
petulantly die leaving an erl_crash_dump with a 'cannot allocate XXXX
of heap' message.

With my improvements and garbage collecting the application was much
better but the db simply got too big. Eventually Linux got tired of
the VM and some other urchin of a process fighting over the crust of a
half-chewed SIMM and delivered a resounding skelp...

Same thing, different message...

But some judicious erlang:term_to_binary(...) reduced the db size by
89% for the win..

We were running on a tichy cheapskate Linode anyhoo...


On 14 March 2011 13:28, Evans, Matthew <> wrote:
> Are you running with heart?
> If so you may want to do your test with heart disabled. I've seen that when heart is enabled it often stops the crash dump from getting generated.
> From experience though, my guess would be a memory leak in one or more processes.
> Matt
> -----Original Message-----
> From:  [mailto:] On Behalf Of Gordon Guthrie
> Sent: Monday, March 14, 2011 4:32 AM
> To: erlang-questions Questions
> Subject: [erlang-questions] VM ends with 'killed'
> Folks
> I have been trying to resolve some run time issues. We are running a
> big data load and the VM was crashing due to memory running out.
> The first issue was a runaway message queue - so we put in a limiter
> that checked that processes message queue and waited til it cleared if
> there was overload.
> The problem moved to another process whose heap would grow and grow.
> Adding a check on the heap size and forced garbage collect appeared to
> be the answer.
> But now when I run the load, after adding most of the data the VM
> suddenly ends with the stark message:
> Killed
> [End]
> There is no crash dump. What do I do now? Where do I start debugging this?
> Gordon
> --
> Gordon Guthrie
> CEO hypernumbers
> http://hypernumbers.com
> t: hypernumbers
> +44 7776 251669
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Gordon Guthrie
CEO hypernumbers

t: hypernumbers
+44 7776 251669

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