Interpreting /proc/meminfo. How much free memory do I have?

Eberhard Stoll eberhard.stoll at
Mon Mar 27 20:00:49 EST 2006

Roger Larsson schrieb:

>On måndag 27 mars 2006 08.49, antonio.dibacco wrote:
>>I'm a little bit puzzled with the fields in /proc/meminfo. Which fields
>>have I to sum up to get the amount of free memory?
>>From a 2.6 /proc/meminfo
>MemTotal:       515532 kB
>MemFree:          6012 kB
>Buffers:         79964 kB
>Cached:          83264 kB
>SwapCached:      82840 kB
>Active:         294024 kB
>Inactive:       130304 kB
>- - -
>Completely free is only MemFree. But those pages are only needed for
>interrupt handlers (close enough).
>Cached pages are also free but since they contain data that maybe will
>be needed again (unmodified data that already is on disk) they are not
>returned to MemFree state.
>Inactive pages has not been in use for awhile and can be written out
>if needed (some are probably unmodified and quick to get)
Active + Inactive + MemFree is not equal MemTotal. Where can i find the


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