I work on a program with about 50 DLLs that are loaded from one executable, it's an old organically grown program where the only rationale for creating a new DLL is that one previously didn't exist to fill a given need. (and namespaces didn't exist in Delphi so it never crossed our mind to make dll1.main.pas, dll2.main.pas or something even more unique)
What we want to do is consolidate all these DLLs into one executable, since none of them are used out of the program, there shouldn't be much of a problem. The concern my boss has is that if we did this, the memory overhead for terminal server clients would go through the roof.
So, I've stepped through enough initialization code to know that lots of stuff is done every time a DLL is loaded in to memory, but say I've got a project with about 4000 files, and 50 dlls, 10 of which are probably utilized by any one user in any one session of the program. The 50 dlls are about 2/3rds form files, if not more, but beyond that there's not a lot of other resources being loaded (only a few embedded pictures, icons, cursors, etc..). If I loaded all these files in to memory, how much memory is used per unit? how much is used per class? How do I keep the overhead down? and what is the biggest project one can reasonably expect to build with Delphi?
This tidbit won't help answering, but I think it might clarify what my boss is worried about, we currently start our program at about 18megs, normal working conditions are usually less than 40 megs, he thinks it could climb as high as 120 megs.