The operating system runs on physical memory and provides an individual, virtual address space to each process, for storing data. To make the transfer between virtual and physical memory easier.
The operating system divides the part of the memory, it doesn't need for its own purpose, into pages. So the virtual address space, a process interacts with, is a multiple of these pages.

Why isn't this true? Why isn't the actual memory consumption (as shown on my top) a multiple,

  986  212076  11:22.29 Xorg
 1194  504916   1:56.15 pulseaudio
 1252  445884   0:13.69 xfce4-terminal
  827    4256   0:08.16 acpid

of the pagesize, my operating system uses?

acpid uses 4256 bytes of Virtual memory. getconf PAGESIZE shows that my system uses a page size of 4096 bytes (4KiB)

1 Answer 1


It actually behaves exactly like you describe.

Top's memory output is in KiB which is why every entry is divisable by 4, since your page size is 4KiB.

  • 1
    ._. .... Well, I am officially a retard. kinda new to this site, should I delete this nonsense or keep the question up?
    – Junaga
    Commented Sep 30, 2016 at 17:20
  • 3
    Leave it up. I've seen much worse. Commented Sep 30, 2016 at 17:27

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .