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Adobe ColdFusion 8 Web Application Construction Kit, Volume 1: Getting Started by Charlie Arehart, Raymond Camden, Ben Forta

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Application Variable Timeouts

By default, application variables are kept on the server almost indefinitely. They die only if two whole days pass without any visits to any of the application’s pages. After two days of inactivity, ColdFusion considers the APPLICATION scope to have expired, and the onApplicationEnd method of the Application.cfc file is called, if it exists. Whether or not this method exists, all associated application variables are flushed from its memory.

If one of your applications uses a large number of application variables but is used very rarely, you could consider decreasing the amount of time that the APPLICATION scope takes to expire. Doing so would let ColdFusion reuse the memory taken up by the application variables. ...

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