The Gory Details of Garbage Collection

By Erlang Central | Published: May 28, 2012

Garbage collection is the key to automatic memory management. It relieves the programmer from the tedious and error prone task of manually keeping track of all mallocs and frees in a program.
In this talk we will look at the basics of garbage collection and take a look inside the Erlang VM to see how garbage collection works in the Erlang context.
Talk objectives: Describe garbage collection in general and how it works in Erlang in particular.
Target audience: Anyone interested in the gory details of the inside of the VM.
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  • Jesper Wilhelmsson

    I have the solution, now I only need to find the problem.

    Jesper Wilhelmsson has been working with garbage collection and memory management for the last ten years. He started as a PhD student at Uppsala University where he was part of the HiPE team and experimented with different memory models in the Erlang VM. As part of this work Jesper designed a new garbage collection algorithm called Mark and Split that was implemented in the JRockit JVM.

    For the last couple of years Jesper has been working as the team lead for the Oracle JVM garbage collection team. In this role he has been (and still is) coordinating GC development both in the JRockit JVM and the HotSpot JVM. Main focus right now is to figure out what features to deliver in JDK 8.

    Jesper Wilhelmsson

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