HowTo: Check Swap Usage In Solaris Unix

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How do I check swap (page) usage under Sun / Oracle Solaris Unix operating systems using command line options? How do I see virtual memory statistics including used and total swap space?

Solaris Unix supports various command to get the information about swap space. You need to login as root and type the following commands:


# swap -s
# swap -l

You can also use the top and vmstat commands:
# top
# vmstat
# vmstat -p

You need to see page field which report information about page faults and paging activity. The information on each of the following activities is given in units per second:

re – page reclaims — but see the -S option for how this field is modified.
mf – minor faults — but see the -S option for how this field is modified.
pi – kilobytes paged in
po – kilobytes paged out
fr – kilobytes freed
de – anticipated short-term memory shortfall (Kbytes)
sr – pages scanned by clock algorithm
When executed in a zone and if the pools facility is active, all of the above (except for “de”) only report activity on the processors in the processor set of the zone’s pool.


Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.

1 comment

  1. Hi
    I have a question regarding solaris zfs , I dont know whether this is the right forum or not .

    Command : zfs list

    output :
    bash-3.00# zfs list rpool/swap
    rpool/swap 1.59G 106G 92.6M –

    command : swap -l
    swapfile dev swaplo blocks free
    /dev/zvol/dsk/rpool/swap 181,2 8 3145720 3119248

    The value of usage of swap in both the cases is different, In zfs list command the value of swap usage is 1.59 g
    But the value of swap used in through swap -l is around 0.012g ((3145720 – 3119248)/(2*1024*1024))

    why both the outputs are different. As i am new to to this solaris can anybody help me out.


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