Quoting from lwn.net
The “proportional set size” (PSS) of a process is the count of pages it has in memory, where each page is divided by the number of processes sharing it. So if a process has 1000 pages all to itself, and 1000 shared with one other process, its PSS will be 1500
/proc/PID/smaps is an extension based on maps, showing the memory consumption for each of the process’s mappings. For each of mappings there is a series of lines such as the following:
08048000-080bc000 r-xp 00000000 03:02 13130 /bin/bash Size: 1084 kB Rss: 892 kB Pss: 374 kB Shared_Clean: 892 kB Shared_Dirty: 0 kB Private_Clean: 0 kB Private_Dirty: 0 kB Referenced: 892 kB Anonymous: 0 kB Swap: 0 kB KernelPageSize: 4 kB MMUPageSize: 4 kB Locked: 374 kB
The first of these lines shows the same information as is displayed for the mapping in /proc/PID/maps. The remaining lines show the size of the mapping (size), the amount of the mapping that is currently resident in RAM (RSS), the process’ proportional share of this mapping (PSS), the number of clean and dirty private pages in the mapping. Note that even a page which is part of a MAP_SHARED mapping, but has only a single pte mapped, i.e. is currently used by only one process, is accounted as private and not as shared. “Referenced” indicates the amount of memory currently marked as referenced or accessed. “Anonymous” shows the amount of memory that does not belong to any file. Even a mapping associated with a file may contain anonymous pages: when MAP_PRIVATE and a page is modified, the file page is replaced by a private anonymous copy. “Swap” shows how much would-be-anonymous memory is also used, but out on swap.
This Question on
Unix and Linux Stackexchange covers almost the topic. See Mat’s excellent answer which will surely clear all your doubts.