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Low virtual memory: What is it and How to fix?

You may have received an error message while working on any of Microsoft office programs like “Your system is low on virtual memory. To ensure that Windows runs properly, increase the size of your virtual memory paging file. For more information, see Help.” This is a result of low virtual memory problem.

What is low virtual memory?

Virtual memory, stored on your hard disk as page file or swap file and 1.5 times greater than real memory, is used when running programs require more memory than your computer actually has. Windows can use hard disk space as random access memory (RAM).

Windows manages memory processes itself by swapping saved programs between virtual memory and physical memory. Windows takes care of the size of page file and it is not something to be worried about; however, it is a common windows problem. It is probably because of low paging file size setting or not having enough physical memory. You can continue to breathe with low physical memory. But you might face memory related issues especially when a certain program is memory intensive in nature or you are running multiple programs at a time.

How to fix low virtual memory problem?

The process for all versions of windows is more or less same.

1. Increase the size of page file. Go to start and type “computer” in the search box. After opening computer, right click on the computer and click properties. A dialog box of system properties will open. On the advanced tab, click settings on the performance pane. On dialog box of performance options, you will see different tabs, Click Advanced. Then click Change on virtual memory pane. Uncheck the box “automatically manage paging file size” if you are unable to edit custom settings in windows 7 and vista. Change the initial size and maximum size, click set, and Ok. Keep clicking Ok so that all dialog boxes close. If it needs restart, then reboot.

2. Upgrade your computer’s memory.

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