[erlang-questions] Erlang node memory consumption grows to 18GB in few seconds

Chaitanya Chalasani <>
Sat Apr 14 11:55:28 CEST 2018


Hi,

I see the memory consumption of an erlang node grows exponentially and quickly when I was sending binary data of about 700 MB from shell to a simple erlang listener process and the shell process is stuck.

-module(strange).
-export([start/0, listener/0, send/1, stop/0]).

start() ->
  register(?MODULE, spawn(?MODULE, listener, [])).

listener() ->
  receive
    {send, Data} ->
      io:format("Received Data ~p ~n", [Data]),
      listener();
    stop ->
      io:format("Stopping listener ~n")
  end.

send(Data) ->
  ?MODULE ! {send, Data}.

stop() ->
  ?MODULE ! stop.

$ uname -a
Darwin Chaitanyas-MacBook-Pro.local 17.5.0 Darwin Kernel Version 17.5.0: Mon Mar  5 22:24:32 PST 2018; root:xnu-4570.51.1~1/RELEASE_X86_64 x86_64

$ erl
Erlang/OTP 20 [erts-9.3] [source] [64-bit] [smp:8:8] [ds:8:8:10] [async-threads:10] [hipe] [kernel-poll:false] [dtrace]

Eshell V9.3  (abort with ^G)
1> c(strange).
{ok,strange}
2> {ok, Data} = file:read_file("centos.iso").
{ok,<<51,237,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,
      144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,144,
      144,144,...>>}
3> strange:start().
true
4> strange:send(Data).

BREAK: (a)bort (c)ontinue (p)roc info (i)nfo (l)oaded
       (v)ersion (k)ill (D)b-tables (d)istribution

The observer says -
<0.53.0>	group:server/3	93980000	17957208520	1	erlang:integer_to_list/1

The Mac activity monitor shows Erlang consuming 18GB of RAM.

Kindly, help me understand what is happening.

/Chaitanya
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