- Virtual memory takes you where your RAM cannot. How? It basically combines your RAM with some free space on your hard disk in order to enable you to run more programs and apps than you normally could.
- Every once in a while though, even virtual memory can run low especially when you run software that demands a lot of resources. Fortunately, there are ways to fix this and we have listed them all in the article below.
- Discover more computer memory tips to help you manage your PC's virtual memory and more.
- Check out our Windows 10 errors hub as well and leave nothing to chance when it comes to handling your OS.
Let’s say you have a computer running on Windows 10 that seems to run out of memory while using some heavy-duty programs like a game, Visual Studio or AutoCAD.
When Windows runs out of memory to function, it taps into Virtual Memory which is used to store some of the least used pages of memory into a file called pagefile.sys.
Virtual Memory is useful in many ways and helps running programs that require high resources easily. But sometimes you might run into problems related to Virtual Memory when Windows 10 might fail to access the pagefile.sys file.
In this post, we will see how one can easily make some changes in settings and get rid of the Windows 10 Virtual Memory Too Low error.
What causes Windows 10 Virtual Memory Too Low error?
Initially, Windows sets the size of pagefile.sys file depending on the amount of RAM that your PC has.
Let’s say you have about 8GB RAM physically on your PC. Now, the size of the virtual memory set by Windows will be equal to 2GB or a 32-bit system and about 4GB on a 64-bit system.
When you face the Windows 10 Virtual Memory too low error, it means that the program you are trying to use is demanding a lot of resources that even the virtual memory is not able to handle.
How to fix Windows 10 Virtual Memory Too Low error?
- Extend virtual memory
- Get more RAM
- Disable memory-hogging apps and programs
- Scan your computer for malware and other cyber threats
- Repair your Registry
- Check your disk for errors
- Clean your temporary files and folders
1. Extend virtual memory
This error can easily be eliminated by extending the size of the virtual memory on your system. In the following steps, we will increase the size of pagefile.sys by tweaking a bit the settings and that should help you in getting rid of this problem.
- Press Windows Key + R and this will start the RUN dialogue.
- Now type in sysdm.cpl and this will open up the System Properties window.
- Now in this new window, open the Advanced tab and click the Settings button in the Performance section.
- This will open the Performance Options window and now you need to switch to the Advanced tab.
- Now click on the Change button in the Virtual memory section and this will open a new window.
- Now click on the checkbox on the top that says Automatically manage paging file size for all drives.
- Now click on the Custom Size radio button. Here you can set new the new initial pagefile.sys size along with the maximum size.
- Click on OK, then click on Apply on the next window and now you need to restart your PC in order for the new changes to be in effect.
This should fix the error related to low memory on Windows 10. The same method works for Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 8.1 so go ahead and try it if you are facing such a problem.
2. Get more RAM
Well, there is only so much virtual memory can do. Also, keep in mind that pagefile.sys uses your hard disk space to create a virtual memory which is much slower than an actual RAM.
While we’re at it, check out these 4 best RAM optimizers for Windows 10 to make your computer run faster.
3. Disable memory-hogging apps and programs
Low memory issues may also be triggered by certain apps and programs that simply eat up computer memory. The quickest solution to fix this issue to turn these programs off. But first, you need to identify them.
- Go to Start > type Task manager> double click on the first result
- Click on the Processes tab > select Memory to filter the programs that use too much memory
- Right-click on the respective program > select End task
4. Scan your computer for malware and other cyber threats
Malware, mining software and other such programs may also cause put a strain on PC memory.
The problem is that their sneaky programs run in the background and you only notice them when it’s too late or their effects have become all too obvious.
Use your antivirus of choice to run a full system scan. You can also install a dedicated anti-malware tool for an extra layer of protection.
We also recommend installing an anti-cryptomining tool that detects and blocks cryptocurrency miners. These tools use your computer’s processing power to mine cryptocurrencies without your consent.
One of the best protection tools is considered to be Bitdefender. After being World’s Nr. 1 antivirus, it is also a great malware blocker and it also protects your traffic and your browsing.
5. Repair your Registry
Malware may also change certain Registry keys which could cause your PC to behave in an unusual manner.
Don’t forget to first backup your registry in case anything goes wrong so that you can restore a working OS version. Here’s how to run an SFC scan:
1. Go to Start > type cmd > right-click Command Prompt > select Run as Administrator
2. Now type the sfc /scannow command
3. Wait for the scanning process to complete and then restart your computer. All corrupted files will be replaced on reboot.
6. Check your disk for errors
Windows 10 allows you to check your disk for errors using Command Prompt.
Start Command Prompt as administrator and type the chkdsk C: /f command followed by Enter. Replace C with the letter of your hard drive partition.
To repair physical and logical errors after running this command, you also need to run the r parameter command as well.
7. Clean your temporary files and folders
As you use your computer or browse the Internet, your PC accumulates various unnecessary files, the so-called junk files. They may affect your computer’s processing speed, memory, and responsiveness.
The simplest and quickest manner to delete your temporary files and folders is to use Disk Cleanup.
1. Go to Start > type Disk Cleanup > launch the tool
2. Select the disk that you want to clean > the tool will them tell you how much space you can free up
So, if even after following the steps above you are facing the same error, then it is time for you to buy some more RAM and that will fix the problem for you for sure!
Let us know the outcome of your investigations by hitting the comments section below.
FAQ: Learn more about virtual memory on Windows 10
- Will increasing virtual memory increase performance?
While virtual memory enables you to run more programs than your RAM quota, increasing this parameter can actually affect your PC’s performances and make it work slower. We suggest you use optimizer tools.
- Is Ram a virtual memory?
- How do I free up virtual memory Windows 10?
Open Control Panel ->System ->Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows->Advanced and click on Change under the Virtual memory section. Check out this guide for more tips.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in February 2018 and has been since revamped and updated in March 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.