Why is rpc.nisd such a memory pig according to ps?

The good news is that it's not memory OR swap space you're
being shown by 'ps'. Instead it's showing you the process
ADDRESS space which includes 256 MB of address space reserved
for the NIS+ transaction log. Given the cost of moving things
around in memory and the fact that we have 4 GB of address
space to play with it, this is a good idea. You've just got to
stop thinking small. THINK BIG. It's only 1/16th of the total
process address space being used. And if you ever exceed the
256 MB size of the transaction log you're doing something VERY

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