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Java / Garbage collection

How does Garbage Collection work in Java?

Garbage collection works by employing several GC algorithms, for example, Mark and Sweep.

Garbage Collector is the program running in the background that looks into all the objects in the memory and find out objects that are not referenced by any part of the program. All these unreferenced objects are deleted and space is reclaimed for allocation to other objects.

There are many kinds of garbage collector available in Java to collect different area of heap memory, some of them include serial, parallel and concurrent garbage collectors.

The basic way of garbage collection involves 3 steps:

  • Marking is the first step where garbage collector identifies which objects are in use and which ones are not in use.
  • Normal Deletion: Garbage Collector removes the unused objects and reclaim the free space to be allocated to other objects.
  • Deletion with Compacting: After deleting unused objects, all the survived objects can be moved to be together. This will increase the performance of allocation of memory to newer objects.

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