Advanced tips and tricks
Memory usage and caches
w3af uses various types of caches to speed-up the scan process, one of the
most important ones is an in-memory cache which holds the result of parsing an
HTTP response body. Parsing HTTP response bodies in a CPU intensive process, and
w3af plugins might want to parse the same response so it makes a
lot of sense to use a cache in this situation.
The ParserCache is a LRU cache which holds the items in memory to provide fast access. Some advanced users might note that the cache size is set to a constant (10 at the time of writing this documentation), which has these side effects:
w3afwill consume ~250MB of RAM, most of it allocated by the cache.
- When run on a system with low free RAM using ~250MB is good, since we want to avoid operating system swapping pages to disk.
- When run on a system with 8GB of free RAM
w3afcould be adding more items to the cache and, increase the cache hit-rate, reduce the CPU usage and overall scan time.
Most users won't even notice all this and use
w3af without this advanced
tweak, but feel free to adjust the
CACHE_SIZE = 10 to any value that fits
In order to debug the cache hit-rate (which should increase with the CACHE_SIZE)
w3af with the
W3AF_CORE_PROFILING environment variable set to
and inspect the JSON files at