Re: [R] Maximum amount of memory

From: Thomas Lumley <tlumley_at_u.washington.edu>
Date: Tue 22 Mar 2005 - 05:43:36 EST

On Mon, 21 Mar 2005, Tim Cutts wrote:

>
> On 21 Mar 2005, at 4:42 pm, marvena@tin.it wrote:
>
>> Hi,
>> I have a problem:I need to use the maximum amount of memory in order to
>> perform a very tough analysis. By purchasing the suitable computer, what's
>> the maximum amount of memory obtainable in R?
>
> Assuming that R is happy to use 64-bit memory pointers, the limit will be
> your wallet.

I believe there are still some limits on sizes of individual objects, such as C and Fortran code that uses int or INTEGER to hold dimensions.

Many packages will definitely have problems: for example, the survival package cannot correctly handle a design matrix with more than 2^31-1 elements, no matter how much memory it has. I don't know how much of the internal R code would also break when vectors have more than 2^31-1 entries.

Now, 2^31-1 entries in a numeric matrix is 16Gb in one object, so your wallet is still likely to be the practical limit.

         -thomas

Thomas Lumley			Assoc. Professor, Biostatistics
tlumley@u.washington.edu	University of Washington, Seattle

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