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Demystifying the FREE command in LINUX

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The free command is used in LINUX to give stats about MEMORY/SWAP usage. Others may have blogged about this simple command before but most important is HOW to understand & interpret the results.
Beginners might be confused the first time they run the command. A little theory on MEMORY USAGE in LINUX: “In Linux, unused memory is wasted memory”
That’s why memory is used for caching whenever possible.
I got the following nice illustration from Linux Performance and Tuning Guidelines by IBM (RedPaper)


The amount of FREE MEMORY is calculated by the formula: FREE = free + buffers + cached
Another website dedicated completely to  the FREE command is : http://www.linuxatemyram.com    by Vidar Holen