Check Memory Usage, program like 'free' in Linux

Lowell Gilbert freebsd-questions-local at
Thu Nov 3 16:48:48 UTC 2011

Jon Schipp <jonschipp at> writes:

> You wouldn't want to know when your machine has reached periods of high
> memory utilization?

No, I want to know when my machine would perform better if it had more
memory.  Keeping memory in use when it otherwise would be "free" means I
get *better* performance.

> Occurrence/frequency information seems pretty valuable.
> More importantly, at specific times, noticing patterns, use during/after
> business hours
> If you didn't want to use memory, it wouldn't be purchased. I don't think
> keeping track of the utility of
> your purchases is silly.

That makes sense, but the amount of "free" memory does not tell you any
of what you're saying you want to track.  Please start by reading the
FAQ question titled "Why does top show very little free memory even when
I have very few programs running?".

> That does the trick. I didn't think it was possible to grab data from
> interactive programs without throwing in some "garbage".

Technically, top(1) isn't an interactive program at all if you send its
output to a pipe.  It still could use terminal features, but it
doesn't.  This is described within the first 25 lines of its manual.  In
fact, I notice that the '-d 1' option (that I put in my suggestion) is

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