Slowly growing memory usage with H264 decoding

Gary Metalle Gary.Metalle at
Fri Aug 21 09:43:16 UTC 2020


Maybe try adding a queue in the pipeline, or setting "sync=false" for the xvimagesink.


From: gstreamer-devel <gstreamer-devel-bounces at> on behalf of Pavel Myuller <pavel.myuller at>
Sent: 21 August 2020 08:56
To: gstreamer-devel at
Subject: Slowly growing memory usage with H264 decoding

Hi All,

I have a problem with this command:

gst-launch-1.0 filesrc location="file.mp4" ! qtdemux ! avdec_h264 ! xvimagesink

GStreamer version is 1.16.1 from Ubuntu 19.10 distribution (also reproduced on 1.16.2)

The memory usage of the gst-launch process is continuously growing while the file is being played. The rate of growth is very slow at ~1MB/7min.

If I replace xvimagesink with fakesink, the memory grows much faster until the file is successfully decoded. Steadily from ~140MB to ~170MB for 4 hour video.

This problem persists with playbin and decodebin elements.

If I replace source H264 video with the one encoded in VP9, the problem goes away. Any other H264 video exhibits this problem.

Anyone else experienced this? What can I do to diagnose the issue better?

Thanks you in advance,

Pavel Myuller.
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