Insufficient Memory or disc space while working with Word
Thread poster: Andrea Appel

Andrea Appel
Canada
Local time: 12:24
English to German
+ ...
Mar 23, 2005

Hello,

I did a lot of copying and pasting on a Word application and suddenly I get this message when I want to paste some info from the web on it.

There is insufficient memory or disc space


The clipboard is empty so I dont know. I also opened a new application and same thing, once I want to paste I get the same message.

I have Office XP Professional, should I try to do a disc clean up?
I dont think my PC has more information stored than others.
Thank you!
Kind regards,
Andrea


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 19:24
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Nothing to worry about Mar 23, 2005

This happens because Word keeps changes in memory (for undo/redo) and other reasons. Save the file, start Windows from scratch and get on with work. After a week or so Windows usually is too slow to do anything, it is constantly swapping applications from and to virtual memory.
Regards
Heinrich


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Andrea Appel
Canada
Local time: 12:24
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Dear Heinrich Mar 23, 2005

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

This happens because Word keeps changes in memory (for undo/redo) and other reasons. Save the file, start Windows from scratch and get on with work. After a week or so Windows usually is too slow to do anything, it is constantly swapping applications from and to virtual memory.
Regards
Heinrich


Thank you for your response. I did start Window again but it still happens. I also tried to check my computer information but the access to it is denied.

After a week or so Windows usually is too slow to do anything, it is constantly swapping applications from and to virtual memory

I dont really understand what you mean by that Mr. Heinrich

Thanks for your help.
Andrea


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Andrea Appel
Canada
Local time: 12:24
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Interesting day Mar 23, 2005

I was just trying to paste a sentence into google and it also does not work??

Ohhhh my paster is broken (-;


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Suzanne Blangsted  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:24
Danish to English
+ ...
not enough memory?? Mar 23, 2005

Defrag - at least once a week. Clean disc also helps. If you usually work with large files, increase the amount of memory on your PC. I can't remember (my memory is also bad) how this was done, but when I had memory problems (on the PC, of course), I increased the default memory. If you have a user manual for the XP, it should be in there.

[Edited at 2005-03-23 16:39]


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Andrea Appel
Canada
Local time: 12:24
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Huh really, Mar 23, 2005

BLANGSTED wrote:

Defrag - at least once a week. Clean disc also helps. If you usually work with large files, increase the amount of memory on your PC. I can't remember (my memory is also bad) how this was done, but when I had memory problems (on the PC, of course), I increased the default memory. If you have a user manual for the XP, it should be in there.

[Edited at 2005-03-23 16:39]


Defrag at least once a week. Wow, I am just doing it the first time since 2 years. I guess this will take a while, the green thingies (sorry can´t think of the name,) are moving very very slowly. I will let you know what happend (is so interesting) ha ha.

Thank you so much, Mrs. Blangsted

Regards,
Andrea



[Edited at 2005-03-23 16:55]


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Suzanne Blangsted  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:24
Danish to English
+ ...
defrag pc Mar 23, 2005

It takes but a few minutes to defrag your PC once a week. It will run much faster. I still recommend increasing the PC memory in addition to the clean-up.

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Andrea Appel
Canada
Local time: 12:24
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Hello again (-: Mar 23, 2005

I did a disc clean up and a disc defragmentation.

I wanted to copy a contact number from a website into word, but I realized now that it is this particularly contact I can not copy and paste. Is it possible that you can only copy and paste certain things from the web. It was not a pdf file.

Those things can really slow your day down if you think about it. All this because of a contact number.
But I guess my PC got freed from a lot of unnecessary stuff.

Thank you Heinrich and thank you Madam for your help!

[Edited at 2005-03-23 19:20]


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Can Altinbay  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:24
Japanese to English
+ ...
After a week or so... Mar 23, 2005

Andrea Di Marco wrote:

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

This happens because Word keeps changes in memory (for undo/redo) and other reasons. Save the file, start Windows from scratch and get on with work. After a week or so Windows usually is too slow to do anything, it is constantly swapping applications from and to virtual memory.
Regards
Heinrich


Thank you for your response. I did start Window again but it still happens. I also tried to check my computer information but the access to it is denied.

After a week or so Windows usually is too slow to do anything, it is constantly swapping applications from and to virtual memory

I dont really understand what you mean by that Mr. Heinrich

Thanks for your help.
Andrea


I believe he means that if you keep Windows running without shutting down for a week or so, it usually is too slow. If you shut down every day, this does not apply to you.

Of course, I shut down every day, and Windows is STILL too slow, but then my computer's 4 years old.


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davidgreen
German to English
sometimes what you try to copy from the web contains other things Mar 27, 2005

It could also be that there were a lot of hidden things in the text that you were trying to copy(formatting, commands, pictures that you perhaps couldn't see etc.). In general, I find it always fastest and easiest to copy text from websites first into notepad, then save and close that file. then open the txt file in word and it will give you only text with no formatting.
hope that helps


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escudo
English
Most of the suggested info will NOT address the underlying problem May 31, 2005

While the info and hints provided are good, they don't fix the problem.

It's not simply an issue of actually having enough free memory. I suspect it's how Windows and the applications manage memory, and whether the right resource data are being communicated between the applications (in other words, is Windows telling Word the RIGHT memory available value?...Is the Paste operation telling Windows the right figure?). Is it a matter of sufficient CONTIGUOUS physical memory being available? (however, it's hard to believe that in 200MB of free physical memory that 30KB of contiguous and available memory isn't present). Is the Paste routine strictly limited to the use of physical memory only? Is it denied the use of the swapfile for some reason? Only the programmers know (because the software licenses prohibit decompiling the software to see how they work).

HERE’S WHAT I’VE SEEN:
The problem still occurs with 200MB of free physical memory, and a huge amount of disk space unused and available for swapfile and pagefile. And, the clipboard can be EMPTY and the problem still occurs. However, how Word/Paste/Windows manage the transfer internally is up for grabs.

MEMORY AVAILABLE (REAL AND VIRTUAL):
For example, the "Insufficient Memory" error still occurs on a machine with a 100GB disk (30GB used), 320MB ram (200MB ram FREE and available), a >2GB swapfile (and only 100MB of the swapfile actually in use according to Windows), a cleared and empty system clipboard, and an Internet Explorer TEXT ONLY source data block size of less than 30KB (vanilla text, no images, no off-page refs, etc).

APPLICATIONS RUNNING:
In addition, all non-vital startup programs were prevented from starting (like anti-virus, pop-up killers, etc). In otherwords, the bare minimum of system applications have been running along with IE and Word.

TYPE OF DATA:
As to the "type" of data causing the error, the SAME data block can be segmented into smaller blocks and multiple pastes will then work. If a data TYPE were causing the problem the problem would still occur because ultimately it is still transferred.

It doesn't matter whether the block contains text, tables, formatted text, images, hyperlinks, html tags, or animation applets. The problem can still occur or not occur independent of content or size, seemingly with no discernible-to-the-user reason so far.


FORMATTED VS. UNFORMATTED MATERIAL:
This message ONLY seems to arise when pasting formatted material from IE into Word. Pasting into an application like Notepad, where the formatting is stripped eliminates the problem. In Word, if I paste using "Paste Special -> unformatted" the SAME block of data, then also no problem.

The problem exists even when the source "formatted" material consists soley of simple html formatted text (CONFIRMED NO scripts, NO graphics, NO non-text tags, etc.). It doesn’t seem to matter WHAT format was involved, only that formatting of some type was involved.

Often I was able to reduce the problem by copying smaller pieces of the problem-causing segment and assembling them into the Word document with multiple paste (formatted) operations, but that did NOT always work (but that may have been because I wouldn't take the time to cut it up into small-enough pieces).


SYSTEM/APPLICATION IN-USE TIME:
It DOES seem to happen more often after the system has been on continuously for some time. Usually this means that Word and IE have been running continuously or much of the time as well. However, there have been times when my system has been on for a few hours, and the problem starts to occur, and other times I’ve run the system, keeping it VERY busy running a dozen applications, opening and closing over a hundred windows, for days, and NEVER see the problem.

Normally, as some have already posted, this suggests "memory leakage" as the culprit, but even with memory being constantly scrubbed and a substantial amount kept "free", this problem occurs. Installing a memory scrubber and manually initiating a "memory leakage" clean-up doesn't fix the problem either.


POSSIBLE AGGRAVATING FACTOR:
I have seen the problem SEEM to happen more often after I have been doing some pastes involving tables at some point, but that is not a firm piece of data. And again, the block of data being transferred doesn’t have to have a table for the problem to occur.


PERFORMANCE IMPACT:
If the source document block contains tags and links to images and other content which the application must RE-contact the website to download (as is often the case), this will degrade performance...but again, it is not the sole cause of the "Insufficient Memory" problem. This is why it can take up to a minute or more before the system reports the problem after seemingly doing nothing. During this time it has been trying to contact the website(s) to download the ancillary data. Why it doesn’t use the copy of the data already downloaded to your computer is something I’ll never understand the logic of. (it would significantly improve network bandwidth).


SOME EXPERIMENTS/OBSERVATIONS TO KEEP IN MIND:
I’m going to keep in mind the following to try to get a better handle on this…
1) Word keeps a list of temporary documents, named Document1, Document2, etc. Sometimes, when I start Word, the first blank document I open is labeled something OTHER than Document1…perhaps Document8. I would think that each time I restart Word (after a stable and normal shutdown) it should be a “clean-slate”. I wonder if this means Word is having a problem freeing its INTERNAL allocation of space for various program operations. This could be a clue in to the “Insufficient Memory” issue.
2) Once I get the “Insufficient Memory” error in Word, I’m going to try pasting into another Microsoft application that is ALSO capable of handling formatted data. If the problem goes away, this would pretty much say Word has a fundamental flaw. (which would be across multiple operating systems, including XP from what I’ve heard/seen). If it fails, then I’ll try a non-MS application. If that fails, it would tend to point the finger at Windows memory management. If it works, then it would suggest a Microsoft-exclusive data interchange problem. I know these could mean other things, but it’s a start.
3) When I see the failure again, I’m going to try setting the webpage to “File -> WorkOffline” and see if that makes a diff. If a paste from an offline copy of the material works when the online copy fails, then it would TEND to clear Word and Paste routine of being the culprit. IE might be the sole culprit.
4) When I see this again, I'm also going to try cutting the source data into different size segments, and copying from different directions (like from the bottom of the document toward the top) to see if this makes a diff.


DISK DEFRAG AND CLEAN-UP
As for disk defragging and clean-up...these will generally improve system performance, but do NOT fix this problem.

(A VERY IMPORTANT DEFRAGGING NOTE. Once defragging has started, the process must NOT be interrupted. It can take hours. With the really large disks now available, it can take a day or more, depending on how your data are arranged on the disk. At a minimum I strongly recommend backing up the entire target disk (all partitions on that disk) before starting the defrag. In addition, I STRONGLY recommend putting your system (even laptops) on an "Uninterruptible Power Supply" (UPS) before starting a defrag. If a main power glitch occurs and you aren't on a UPS, you can kiss your data goodbye. (A data backup will rescue you in that event, but wouldn't you rather spend $50 and avoid possibly several days of downtime while you rebuild your disk and make sure everything is working right?))


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escudo
English
Additional Info on Word Memory Management - Insufficient Memory Jun 1, 2005

There is a good source of info at http://support.microsoft.com/word2kfaq

This webpage points to additional Knowledge Base articles providing more detail in how Word is supposed to work.

I found one item that suggests something is definitely WRONG and not a function of system resources. In note "1)" above I wrote that I thought Word2000 was supposed to start with a "fresh" count of temporary documents (document1, document2, etc) each time it starts "clean". According to the word2kfaq above, that is EXACTLY what is supposed to happen.

Obviously this isn't happening in the real world. This suggests to me that other memory management routines in Word, Word startup, or Word document startup, are NOT working right. I believe this type of malfunction could lead to "Insufficient Memory" issues. Since it's been going on in version after version of Word, I suspect MS doesn't consider it a priority fix. After all..."just reboot" and you're up and running again until next time.

In addition the word2kfaq tells us that Word can be a memory and performance hog. Suggestions are included to reduce the resources required by Word and improve system performance and reduce errors. Trying these MIGHT help reduce the frequency of "Insufficient Memory" or might not. I'm going to try some and see (not that I like any of the suggestions--because they reduce the usability of the application and the system to me...but, I'll try some).

1)reduce number of fonts,
2)increase the default 64KB Word memory cache (in the registry, but NOT in mine apparently, and they didn't provide details on how/where to create the Key),
3)don't use wallpapers on systems with a "small" amount of memory (whatever "small" means to MS),
4)turn off background screensavers,
5)turn off automatic spelling and grammar checking, and
6)reduce your display showing only 256 colors.

There were more, but these were the basics. There was also reference to obtaining a "support9.dot" template, that supposedly helps manage the Word2000 registry.


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