How to resolve out of memory errors?


Hey, I listen to you on KTAR as often as possible, keep it up! I have searched the archives and not found an answer to this.

System is a self built. (I have built a number of computers.) Video card is a 4x AGP Nvidia chipset with 64 megs ram on board. Mobo is a Intel (440 chipset I think!)

I keep getting Out Of Memory errors and insufficient resource errors, windows is increasing the size of your swapfile when just browsing the internet, doing emails, writing Word docs etc. Nothing I am doing is graphics intensive, requires a lot of processor time (CPU is a P3 1Ghz.) The system has successfully run high end games (like MS Flight Sim, other flight sims, Metal of Honor Allied Forces etc.) in the past with no problems. I used to be able to have up to 6 or 8 browsers open at a time, each of them loading, print stuff etc. all at the same time. Now I can only have 1 browser and maybe word, and STILL get out of memory errors..

I have gone through and deleted all caches, cleaned up the hard drives (100 and 80 gigs) deleted any temp files, and everything else I could think of. Nothing is running in the background that would take up a lot of memory either.





This question was answered on March 18, 2003. Much of the information contained herein may have changed since posting.


This issue can be caused by any of the following possibilities:

1 Not enough memory installed in computer

2 Memory management software not installed / issue

3 Not enough disk storage

4 Software issue


1 Not enough memory installed in computer

Ensure that the computer meets the system requirement of the program that you are trying to run

In many cases your computer may have enough memory however may not have enough conventional memory If you are running MS-DOS run the mem command to ensure you have enough conventional memory needed to run the program.

MS-DOS users can find additional information on getting additional memory / conventional memory by following some of the suggestions found on our autoexec.bat / config.sys page Or information on how to create a bootable diskette can be found on our boot disk page.

2 Memory management software not installed / issue

Many programs may require that memory management be installed or not installed

If you are running MS-DOS or Windows 3.x on the computer ensure that the computer is loading himem.sys as well as emm386.exe unless otherwise recommended by the program documentation or program company If these are both loading consider temporarily remarking the emm386 line as it could be causing your issues Additional information about loading himem.sys and emm386 can be found on our autoexec.bat / config.sys page.

If you are running MS-DOS or Windows 3.x on the computer attempt to temporarily disable or uninstall it to determine if it's causing your issue.

If you are running Windows 95 or above emm386.exe and himem.sys or any memory management program should not be required Windows is capable of managing the computers memory

If you are using Windows 95 or above with a memory management program it is recommended that it be uninstalled or removed from the computer as it could be causing the issue If this program is required to meet the system requirements it is recommended you upgrade your system memory

3 Not enough disk storage

Ensure that the computer hard drive has at least 100MB of free disk space if you are running any version of Windows It is possible that if little or no disk space is available that the computer swap file cannot expand in size as needed

Additional information about the win386.swp or windows swap file can be found on document CH000358 (Knowledge based).

4 Software issue

If you continue to encounter out of memory issues with the program you are attempting to run it is possible that the software program may have an issue Ensure that you have all available updates / patches for the program.

If issue persists or if there is no available updates / patches for the program contact the software developer / vendor for additional information and/or support


You are probably running our of address space Every pipe requires more

memory, to hold the CULL's copy of the scene tree I would guess that your

shared arena size was maximized so, that X windows, trying to allocate its

memory fails You should reduce your shared arena size

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Posted by Enyenihi of Katharine Gibbs School - New York on March 18, 2003