FAQ: Resource requirements and limits
Last updated at 9:54 am UTC on 25 February 2003
At the outset, the system creates quite an illusion of "power under the hood." Can you give me a handle on the limits of the implementation in terms of speed and memory?
Smallest version runs in under 1 megabyte (for PDAs) if Morphic is discarded. With morphic, the minimum is probably around 3-4 megabytes (Has anyone tried a minimal morphic image?). The maximum is pretty large – 1.5 gigs? Note these figures are runtime memory requirements – on disk requirements are slightly less because disk snapshots don't hold a lot of temporary objects.
CPU requirements vary wildly depending on what you want to do. To actually run Squeak with graphics at all, you should have at least, oh, something similar to a 60 MHz x486. (Anyone tried with less?) To run the Morphic graphics system, you need something two or three times faster. To use the scripting system in Morphic, you probably need something about 4 times faster yet.
Finally, if you are thinking of porting Squeak to somewhere new, consider that Squeak accesses its memory 32 bits at a time. 64-bit processors probably don't help, and processors with 16-bit busses really do go half as fast. Squeak uses memory very heavily, and so a large cache makes a big difference.