Wireshark-dev: Re: [Wireshark-dev] memory allocation assertion failure reading 219MB file with
From: "Ravi Kondamuru" <ravikondamuru@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 22 Aug 2006 11:02:17 -0700

Thanks for the wiki link.

In the workarounds highlighed, I feel that point 3 (Split the capture file into several smaller ones) can be made more appealing by programatically limiting the amount of data (packets/ memory consumed/ load time) wireshark already read/ used.

Wireshark does something similar when a large file is selected in the "Select a capture file" dialog box when opening a file. After 3 secs (prefs: file_open_preview_timeout) of reading a file, it stops reading further and displays "more than xyz packets (preview timeout)".

My point being, can the same approach be taken with large files during the actual display?

An option will let the user make wireshark parse the subsequent or previous packets till a timeout happens again. An option will let users to make wireshark read the complete file before display. How much to read at a time can be determined as mentioned earlier on one of 1) number of packets read, 2) memory consumed so far or 3) amount of time spent reading.

Please mail, if you guys think of any issues that might make this approach not worth pursuing.


On 8/22/06, Jeff Morriss <jeff.morriss@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Guy Harris wrote:
> Ravi Kondamuru wrote:
>> My question:
>> Is there a known limit on the number of packets that wireshark can deal
>> with in a single file?
> The number of packets that Wireshark (or, I suspect, any network
> analyzer) can deal with is limited; due to a number of factors, the GUI
> widget used to implement the packet list display being one of them (it
> allocates a string for the text value in every column, which eats a lot
> of memory), Wireshark's limit might be lower than some other analyzers.
> This is not a limit saying something such as "Wireshark can't read more
> than 1,227,399 packets"; the point at which it'd run out of memory
> depends on the contents of the packets.

See this page for more info:


Wireshark-dev mailing list