Improved Results for a Memory Allocation Problem

Leah Epstein, Rob van Stee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We consider a memory allocation problem. This problem can be modeled as a version of bin packing where items may be split, but each bin may contain at most two (parts of) items. This problem was recently introduced by Chung et al. (Theory Comput. Syst. 39(6):829-849, 2006). We give a simple 3/2-approximation algorithm for this problem which is in fact an online algorithm. This algorithm also has good performance for the more general case where each bin may contain at most k parts of items. We show that this general case is strongly NP-hard for any k≥3. Additionally, we design an efficient approximation algorithm, for which the approximation ratio can be made arbitrarily close to 7/5.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-92
Number of pages14
JournalTheory of Computing Systems
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Work performed while R. van Stee was at University of Karlsruhe, Germany. Research supported by Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.


  • Approximation algorithms
  • Bin packing
  • Cardinality constraints
  • Splittable items

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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