Low memory and out of memory errors

Updated: 11/13/2018 by Computer Hope

Computer needs to be rebooted

Often out of memory errors can be resolved by rebooting the computer. Before trying any of the steps below, we suggest you first try rebooting the computer.

Not enough memory installed in computer

Computer memory aka RAMEnsure that the computer meets the system requirement of the program that you are trying to run. The system requirements for the program are found on one of the sides of the box the software was included in the product documentation.

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

Memory management software not installed

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. 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 is on our autoexec.bat and config.sys page.

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

If you are running Windows 95 or Windows 98 users, emm386.exe, himem.sys, or any other memory management program should not be required as Windows is capable of managing the computer's 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.

Not enough disk storage

Make sure the computer hard drive has at least 100-500MB of free disk space if you are running any version of Windows. If little or no disk space is available that the computer swap file cannot expand in size as needed.

Software issue

If you continue to encounter out of memory issues with the program you are attempting to run, that the software program may have an issue. Verify that you have all available updates and patches for the program.

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

Bad memory

Finally, if the above suggestions does not help resolve your out of memory issues this issue can also be caused by a computer that has failing or bad memory in the computer.

Additional information