How Can You Tell if Your Computer is Leaking?


seatsNo, I’m not talking about  puddles of liquid under your computer!

If there was that type of leakage no one would have to tell you. Duh! But there is leakage in you computer memory especially when a program is written in the C+ or C++ language. Do you know what is written in the C language that is on your computer? Your Windows operating system. The term leakage is so strange in what it is describing because what is actually happening is that available memory gets smaller and smaller on your computer so as to appear as if it was leaking. But what is really happening is that data in memory is not being erased when the program is shut down. So that every time you call up a program and shut it down you have less and less available memory.

When a program is called into memory all the program’s parts like to sit together touching one another in memory, this is called contiguous. When the program is closed it leaves the pointers and references in the memory.

Picture if you will a movie theater and all the seats are memory locations. If your family is first into the theater then all five of you can sit together wherever you like to see the movie. But when you are in the end of the line to enter the theater then there is a problem for everyone to sit together. Because as you look at each row there will be one person and purse in the seat next to him and the next seat will have a coat and the next seat after that will have another coat in it. Though there is only one person, four seats are taken up. The coats and purses are not people they are markers or pointers or references that the seats are reserved. Now as it gets closer to the start of the movie you are trying desperately to find five seats together that are empty. Imagine that is what is happening  in your computer. That when you call up a program, which is five parts, it can’t find seating together when it  enters memory and has to wait. Why?Because most of the available memory has a coat or purse in it and the empty seats in between never total more than three so the program has to wait untill there are five completely empty seats. Sometimes the five contiguous seating never happens even when the next showing begins. Because people left their coats behind when they went home. 

This is memory leakage!   So what should you do? In the theater they close it down and clean it up then reopen it again!

What about Windows in the computer memory? Well, shut it down and start it up again and the programs will find contiguous seating without a problem.  With the memory leakage understood are you ready for the big question?

Should you turn off your computer at night and turn it on in the morning or should you just keep it running all the time?

Does the term slow as molasses in January mean anything to you?  How about frozen solid?!

What do the seats look like in a theater that has had 8 back to back showings? Would you want to sit in any of them?

Imagine what your computer memory locations look like after closing and opening programs for over three days!

So if you want me to join you to see the new Star Trek movie then we are either the first in line to enter the theater when it opens or no deal.  I don’t want to sit on candy wrappers and spilled soda! 🙂

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One Response to How Can You Tell if Your Computer is Leaking?

  1. Andy Brown says:

    One program that I have found that helps with this problem is called RamBooster, free program at http://www.sci.fi/~borg/rambooster/index.htm . It helps keep the “fragments” cleared.

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