Solaris: Swap Space and the TMPFS File System

The TMPFS file system is activated automatically in the Solaris environment by an entry in the /etc/vfstab file. The TMPFS file system stores files and their associated information in memory (in the /tmp directory) rather than on disk, which speeds access to those files. This results in a major performance enhancement for applications such as compilers and DBMS products that use /tmp heavily.

The TMPFS file system allocates space in the /tmp directory from the system’s swap resources. This means that as you use up space in /tmp, you are also using up swap space. So if your applications use /tmp heavily and you do not monitor swap space usage, your system could run out of swap space.

Swap-Related Error Messages
These messages indicate that an application was trying to get more anonymous memory and there was no swap space left to back it.

application is out of memory

malloc error O

messages.1:Sep 21 20:52:11 mars genunix: [ID 470503 kern.warning]
WARNING: Sorry, no swap space to grow stack for pid 100295 (myprog)

TMPFS-Related Error Messages
directory: File system full, swap space limit exceeded

This message is displayed if a page could not be allocated when writing a file. This can occur when TMPFS tries to write more than it is allowed or if currently executed programs are using a lot of memory.
directory: File system full, memory allocation failed

This message means TMPFS ran out of physical memory while attempting to create a new file or directory.

See TMPFS(7FS) for information on recovering from the TMPFS-related error messages.

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