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8.2.5. myisamchk Memory Usage

Memory allocation is important when you run myisamchk. myisamchk uses no more memory than its memory-related variables are set to. If you are going to use myisamchk on very large tables, you should first decide how much memory you want it to use. The default is to use only about 3MB to perform repairs. By using larger values, you can get myisamchk to operate faster. For example, if you have more than 32MB RAM, you could use options such as these (in addition to any other options you might specify):

shell> myisamchk --sort_buffer_size=16M --key_buffer_size=16M \
           --read_buffer_size=1M --write_buffer_size=1M ...

Using --sort_buffer_size=16M should probably be enough for most cases.

Be aware that myisamchk uses temporary files in TMPDIR. If TMPDIR points to a memory filesystem, you may easily get out of memory errors. If this happens, run myisamchk with the --tmpdir=path option to specify some directory located on a filesystem that has more space.

When repairing, myisamchk also needs a lot of disk space:

  • Double the size of the data file (the original file and a copy). This space is not needed if you do a repair with --quick; in this case, only the index file is re-created. This space is needed on the same filesystem as the original data file! (The copy is created in the same directory as the original.)

  • Space for the new index file that replaces the old one. The old index file is truncated at the start of the repair operation, so you usually ignore this space. This space is needed on the same filesystem as the original index file!

  • When using --recover or --sort-recover (but not when using --safe-recover), you need space for a sort buffer. The following formula yields the amount of space required:

    (largest_key + row_pointer_length) × number_of_rows × 2

    You can check the length of the keys and the row_pointer_length with myisamchk -dv tbl_name. This space is allocated in the temporary directory (specified by TMPDIR or --tmpdir=path).

If you have a problem with disk space during repair, you can try --safe-recover instead of --recover.

  Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License Design by Interspire