Virtual Memory Runs Out - Windows XP

  Cactus 08:49 28 Apr 2003

For the past few weeks I have sometimes been finding that when I open an application (and it does not seem to be specific to one in particular although it quite often happens with Internet Explorer) it sometimes takes a very long time (over a minute) to launch. When this happens the Windows Task Manager shows that the real and virutal memory usage goes up very quickly until it basically runs out; (I have 512Mb RAM). Then I get a dialog box saying Windows has run out of virtual memory and that it is resizing the paging file. This takes about 15 minutes and then everything is fine again. It can happen both when the computer has been on for a long time but also just after start up. I haven't installed any new progrmmes recently, althout I do use Windows Update; I have a feeling that one of these is responsible but I'm not sure and I can't uninstall them easily anyway. I have also noticed that Explorer crashes a lot when I am opening or moving folders and their contents about and I think this started at about the same time as the other problem I've described here. Both problems seen to be getting more frequent. Anyone any ideas?

  Offline 09:10 28 Apr 2003

The first thing I would do is check your Page File setting. Look in: Right click My Computer/Properties/Advanced/Performance Section/ Click the Settings Button/Advanced, The Page file settings are at the bottom. You could try setting it to 'System Managed'. Make sure you have plenty of room on the drive you set your page file up on. It can be on any drive, but the fastest drive is better.

  Cactus 09:32 28 Apr 2003

Thanks for the suggestion. I've just made the adjustment, as I had the paging file set up manually, although it was set for a maximum of over 1GB. (When the problem occurs it is quite facinating to watch every bit of memory, real and otherwise, just 'disappear' in front of your eyes in about 30 seconds.) I'll have to see if it makes any difference, as the problem is an intermittent one. The two dives I have are identical (except for capacity) and very large, so there is plenty of space.

  Offline 09:36 28 Apr 2003

The next time this starts to occur, go into Task Manager Ctrl+Alt+Del & go to the process tab, you may be able to see if you have an application that is draining your memory away.

  Cactus 09:55 28 Apr 2003

When I've looked before there is generally only the application that I am just launching there. (Now I recognise the symptoms of the problem occuring, I can launch Windows Task Manager before everything basically slows to a crawl, so have been able to check.) The CPU usage is generally quite low when all this is happening.

  AndySD 10:02 28 Apr 2003

Go Start then Run type in


then click here and use the Complete list at the bottom of the page and in the Startup tab untick anything not required.

  Offline 10:15 28 Apr 2003

Following on from the point AndySD made, I found this nifty little program for keeping check on what's loading at startup, 'Deskanker'

click here

  Cactus 10:49 28 Apr 2003

Hello. I have as little running there as I can get away with. Don't want all that rubbish running itself!

  AndySD 11:21 28 Apr 2003

Ok then do the same with Services click here

Start/Control Panel/Admin Tools/Services

  Cactus 12:03 28 Apr 2003

Thanks Andy. A lot of stuff to go through there and read! I'll try things over the next day or two and post how I get on. I'm just on the phone trying to get BT to actually get my ADSL to work properly - basically two years of frustration (but I guess that's a different story and thread)!!

  Cactus 10:32 07 May 2003

Just an update and thanks to those that responded. Letting Windows manage its own virtual memory rather than using the settings I had given it to use seems to have solved both the problems I described originally. I can only assume that XP is better at doing this than 98 (and apparently me too)!

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