Adjust Code42 agent settings for memory usage with large backups


The amount of available memory needed to use the Code42 agent increases with the size of your archive or backup file selection. If your Code42 agent crashes frequently, you may benefit from increasing the available memory (or adjusting backup settings to require less memory) if the following conditions apply:

  • Your Mac or Linux device's backup selection exceeds 1 TB of storage or 1 million files.
  • Your Windows device's backup selection exceeds 4 TB of storage or 4 million files.


This article assumes you have the ability to edit your backup settings. Your administrator may prevent editing of these settings.

Additional memory considerations:

  • The Code42 agent uses memory up to the maximum allotted. The maximum is used only if it is needed.
  • Allocate 1 GB (1024 MB) of memory per 1 TB of storage (or per 1 million files). The Code42 agent only needs about 600 MB of memory per 1 TB of storage (or per 1 million files), but this allocation is intended to account for growth in your file selection.
  • In the Code42 agent, memory allocation is dynamically set to use 25% of the physical memory on the device. 

Memory allocation

Backup Selection Size Memory Allocation (MB) 
Up to 1 TB or up to 1 million files 1024
1.5 TB or 1.5 million files 1536 
2 TB or 2 million files 2048 
2.5 TB or 2.5 million files 2560
3 TB or 3 million files 3072
4 TB or 4 million files 4096

Memory limitations 

Do not allocate more memory to the Code42 agent than what exists in your device. For example, if your device has 8 GB of RAM, make sure to allocate less than 8 GB (8192 MB) to the Code42 agent to allow for other required processes on your device.

Windows 32-bit operating systems
Due to limited resources on devices running 32-bit Windows operating systems, the maximum memory allocation for the Code42 agent should be 1200-1500 MB.


You can increase the amount of memory available to the Code42 agent using command-line interface (CLI) commands. 

You shouldn't need to increase memory unless you are experiencing frequent crashes of the Code42 agent and your backup files exceed 1 TB of storage or 1 million files on Mac or Linux or exceed 4 TB of storage or 4 million files on Windows. If you have questions about whether adjusting memory may help resolve crashes of the Code42 agent, contact our Technical Support Engineers.

If you are able to open and sign into the Code42 agent, you can use the command-line interface (CLI) to allocate more memory.

Sending commands from the Code42 console
Administrators can execute this command from the Code42 console.


  1. Open the Code42 agent.
  2. If necessary, sign in to your account.
  3. Use the keyboard shortcut for your operating system:
    • Windows: Ctrl+Shift+C
    • Mac: Option+Command+C
    • Linux: Ctrl+Shift+C
      The command-line area opens.
  4. Enter the following command. Use a value appropriate for the size of your backup selection (for example, 1536 for a 1.5 TB selection):java mx 1536, restart 
    The Code42 agent closes.
  5. Open the Code42 agent and sign in.
In the Code42 agent, memory allocation is dynamically set to use 25% of the physical memory on the device. To set the default value, use the command java mx clear.

Alternative solution

The Code42 agent only uses the maximum memory allotted if it is needed. However, if the maximum memory supported by your device does not accommodate the size of your backup file selection, there are several alternative ways to reduce memory usage.

Remove system and application files from your backup selection

The Code42 agent is designed to back up user files (photos, documents, etc.). It is not designed to back up your operating system or application files. When system and application files are included in your backup file selection, the Code42 agent uses more resources, like memory, backing up these files. Review our guidelines for choosing what to back up for more information.

Reduce backup frequency

The Code42 agent monitors changes to files in real time based on your backup frequency and versions settings. More frequent backups or large numbers of files require the Code42 agent to use more system resources to process your backup. You can reduce the frequency of the New Versions scan to conserve memory.

Reduce CPU allocated to the Code42 agent

You can control the amount of CPU processing time the Code42 agent is allowed to use both when you are present (working on your device) and away. Most modern devices can support allowing the Code42 agent to use a high percentage of CPU time without experiencing any performance issues, but you may want to adjust these settings for older devices. You can adjust these settings from the Code42 agent.

CPU settings apply to the amount of CPU processing time dedicated to Code42 agent work, not to total CPU processing capacity. Therefore, while % CPU may be set at 20, for example, a system monitor may show that 70% of CPU capacity is used for the Code42 agent at a particular point in time. For more information, see Configure CPU usage in the Code42 console.

  1. Sign in to the Code42 agent.
  2. Select Settings icon Settings.
  3. Click Usage.
  4. Reduce the percent of time CPU is allowed to use when the user is both away and present.

Schedule backup

Finally, if you are still experiencing performance issues related to memory, you can configure the Code42 agent to back up only at specified times. However, be careful to set a schedule that allows the Code42 agent to run while your device is on and not in standby mode. You can adjust your backup schedule from the Code42 agent.

  1. Sign in to the Code42 agent.
  2. Select Settings icon Settings.
  3. Select Backup Sets.
  4. Next to Backup Schedule, click Change.
  5. Select Only run between specified times.
  6. Select the days and hours when the Code42 agent is allowed to back up.
  7. Click Save.

Reduce your file selection

If you experience issues related to the Code42 agent's memory usage after adjusting the settings described above, you may need to remove files from your selection to reduce the amount of memory needed to run the Code42 agent.

Removing files
Deselecting files from your backup file selection permanently deletes them from your backup archive. You cannot download files that have been removed from your backup file selection.