VisualWorks Object Memory Management

Andres Valloud


We tend to take garbage collection for granted. However, it is a critical factor that affects application performance. At times it is difficult to tune the delicate interaction between the VM and the image with regards to object creation and reclamation because there are many moving parts. This presentation provides a clear picture of how object memory is managed in VisualWorks, shows how several enhancements have made the tuning task significantly easier and much more rewarding, and discusses several key improvements that will make VisualWorks even better in the near future.


Andrés Valloud has developed in Smalltalk since 1996. He won the 2006 Smalltalk Solutions Coding Contest, ran the competition in 2007 and 2008, is one of the organizers of the Smalltalks conference and a founding member of the FAST foundation, and has written books on Smalltalk. He currently works for Cincom Systems as a lead VM engineer.

Andres writes about a variety of things at