tomfumb tomfumb - 3 months ago 17
Javascript Question

Is there a maximum delay limit for window.setInterval

Today I encountered an interesting problem with window.setInterval. When used with a sufficiently large delay (in this case the number of milliseconds in 30 days) it executes every second instead of every 30 days. Tested in latest Chrome and Firefox.

jsFiddle link

window.setInterval(function() {
document.getElementById("first").innerHTML = new Date().toString();
}, 5000);
window.setInterval(function() {
document.getElementById("second").innerHTML = new Date().toString();
}, 2592000000);


I couldn't find any authoritative documentation on the max value of a delay in setInterval, and the MDN documentation doesn't mention anything. Other sources online suggest that delay should be able to accommodate any signed 32-bit integer.

Does the delay parameter in window.setInterval have a maximum value and what is it?

Vld Vld
Answer

According to the setTimeout documentation on the public wiki MDN there is indeed a maximum, though it doesn't seem "official" - the limitation is a signed 32 bit integer.

Maximum delay value

Browsers including Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, and Firefox store the delay as a 32-bit signed integer internally. This causes an integer overflow when using delays larger than 2147483647, resulting in the timeout being executed immediately.

The value of 2592000000 is indeed larger than 2147483647 thus causing the overflow.