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  "Out of Memory" Error

Windows 95 says I am "out of memory." How can I be out of memory? I've got lots of memory on this machine!

What Windows 95 is probably trying rather clumsily to tell you is that you are running low on disk space. Windows 95 usually pretends to have more memory for programs than is physically available on the computer. If necessary, it uses a dynamically sized swap file on the hard drive to hold chunks of code that don't happen to be active at the moment. The total of this "virtual" memory plus the RAM actually installed on your machine is what Windows 95 means by "memory" in this case. Theoretically, if you had enough physical memory on your system, you wouldn't need the swap file.
     The solution? Free up some disk space by deleting unneeded files. If you are really jammed up, you may have to boot to an MS-DOS prompt to do this.

Note: If you are using Internet Explorer (IE), you may be able to pick up quite a bit of disk space simply by adjusting its ridiculously large cache setting. Try this:
* Launch Internet Explorer; from the View menu, choose "Options..."
* From the resulting dialog, choose the Advanced tab and click the
   "Settings..." button.
* You'll see a slider that controls the percentage of disk space IE uses for
   its cache. The default value is 10%, which is absurd for a large disk.
   For example, IE could gobble up 100MB on a 1GB hard drive! Set the
   slider control to a more reasonable value. I usually limit the cache to
   5-20MB -- e.g., 1-2% on a 1GB drive.
* After you adjust the cache setting, click on the "Empty Folder..."
   button to flush the cache.

MS Knowledge Base, articles Q128327 and Q132571 (on CompuServe, GO MSKB).


Maintained by William K. Walker
Copyright 1997 by William K. Walker
Last update: 23 Jan 97