SUMMARY: Memory leak detection software

From: Angela Thomas Hoynowski (
Date: Wed Oct 07 1992 - 09:27:23 CDT

Mucho thanks to the multitudes of people (and old friends -- Spiros,
did you go to PSU?) who juggled my memory and told me about Purify from
Pure Software. That was indeed the software I was thinking of. Since
there seem to be many different phone numbers, I will only post the e-mail
address as a general source of information.

Two other interesting software packages were also suggested. The messages
are below.

Date: Tue, 6 Oct 1992 15:41:43 -0400
>From: Scott Schwartz <>
Subject: Re: Memory leak detection software???

| I'm looking for software to detect memory leaks. I saw some companies
| advertising such stuff at Uniforum, but cannot locate the info.

You are probably thinking of purify, from Pure Software. It's pretty
spiffy. Hans Boehm from Xerox has a garbage collecting memory
allocator, which, as a side effect, complains about leaks. That's less
spiffy, but it is free. (ftp from

Date: Tue, 6 Oct 92 16:52:59 -0700
>From: David Fetrow <>
Subject: electric fence

 Haven't tried this or the others I've run accross but:

>From!uw-beaver!!!olivea!!uunet!psinntp!pixar!bruce Wed Mar 25 02:00:03 PST 1992
Article: 1529 of comp.sys.sun.misc
From: (Bruce Perens)
Newsgroups: comp.sys.sun.misc
Subject: Electric Fence (a malloc buffer-overrun debugger) posted
Message-ID: <>
Date: 24 Mar 92 20:38:56 GMT
Sender: (Usenet Newsmaster)
Distribution: na
Organization: Pixar -- Point Richmond, California
Lines: 12
Originator: bruce@janis
Nntp-Posting-Host: janis

I have posted my Electric Fence malloc buffer-overrun debugger to
alt.sources and comp.sources.sun .

This is different from the malloc debugger that comes with your Sun.
Electric Fence uses the virtual-memory system to position an
inaccessable memory page immediately after the end of each buffer
returned by malloc(). When your program attempts to write or even
_read_ beyond the end of a malloc-ed buffer, it hits this dead page and
gets an immediate segmentation fault. Finding the errant code with a
debugger then becomes simple.

                                Bruce Perens

Angela Thomas Hoynowski         Internet:
Tandem Computers, Inc.          UUCP:     {...}!tandem!angela

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Fri Sep 28 2001 - 23:06:51 CDT