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About r : Alternative-to-Rs-memorysize-in-linux

Question Detail

R‘s memory.size() is a Windows only. For other functions (such as windows()) the help page gives pointer to non-windows counterparts.

But for memory.size() I could find no such pointers.

So here is my question: is there a function to do the same as memory.size() but in linux?

Question Answer

I think that this should be handled by the operating system. There is no built-in limit that I know of; if necessary, R will use all the memory that it can get.

To obtain information on the total and/or on the available memory in linux, you can try

system('grep MemTotal /proc/meminfo')


system('free -m')


system('lshw -class memory')

The last command will complain that you should run this as super-user and it will give a warning that the output may not be accurate; but from my experience it will still provide a fairly useful output.

To obtain information on the memory usage of a running R script one could either monitor the currently used resources by starting top in a separate terminal, or use, e.g., the following system call from within the R script:

system(paste0("cat /proc/",Sys.getpid(),"/status | grep VmSize"))

Hope this helps.

Using pryr library:


# 27.9 MB

x <- mem_used()
# 27.9 MB
# [1] "bytes"

Result is the same as @RHertel’s answer, with pryr we can assign the result into a variable.

system('grep MemTotal /proc/meminfo')
# MemTotal:       263844272 kB

To assign to a variable with system call, use intern = TRUE:

x <- system('grep MemTotal /proc/meminfo', intern = TRUE)
# [1] "MemTotal:       263844272 kB"
# [1] "character"

Yes, memory.size() and memory.limit() is not working in linux/unix.
I can suggest unix package.

To increase the memory limit in linux:

rlimit_as(1e12)  #increases to ~12GB

You can also check the memory with this:


for detailed information:

also you can find further info here:
limiting memory usage in R under linux

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