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Whenever we run any programs, the system temporarily stores the current data and application file in RAM to access it quickly. As we start operating multiple files or heavier programs, these temporary data occupy the entire RAM space.

As a result, the system won’t have enough memory to load other tasks and will show the “Computer is Low on Memory” error. Normally, you can get rid of this error if you close or remove those programs occupying a large amount of memory.

But if the memory has been hogged by any other means such as malware, registry error, etc., then the situation may not be that straightforward. In this guide, we are going to provide the best possible fixes that will help you solve the issue.

How to Fix “Computer is Low on Memory” in Windows?

If you are using the latest applications in a system with RAM less than 4 GB, the memory may actually not be sufficient to run them, leading to the said error. In such a case, we advise you to add more RAM to your system, which should solve the problem.

However, if you are facing this issue despite having enough RAM, let’s move on to discuss its causes and apply the fixes.

Close Heavy Programs and Disable Startup Applications

Most of the time, we tend to run multiple programs simultaneously and minimize one application while working on another. This causes the RAM to store the data of all the operating applications. As a result, the memory fills up, and the system displays the error.

Similarly, some applications are set to load automatically when the system starts up. The RAM stores the loading information of these programs, and the system uses this data to start them. It leads to additional memory usage leading to the problem.

You will have to close the programs and disable the automatic startup of the applications to free some memory. Let’s see how to do it.

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. In the Processes tab, look for the programs that are using a large amount of memory.
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  3. Select the programs and click End task until you close all such applications.
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  4. Look under the Background Services section and do the same for the services that are hogging more memory. Be careful not to close the system services while doing so.
  5. Go to the Startup tab.
  6. Select an application and click Disable. Do this for all the programs on the list.
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See if the error warning appears again.

Stop Programs From Running in the Background

Sometimes, even after you close a program, it may be running in the background. This will fill the memory space unnecessarily. When more applications continuously run in the background, then the system can show the error indicating it has insufficient memory.

You can disable the permission for the applications to run in the background by following ways.

  1. Press the Windows key and search for Apps & Features. A list of applications will pop up when you click on it.
  2. Click on the three dots found on the right side of an application and select Advanced Options. (Only selected applications may have this feature.)
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  3. In Background Apps Permissions, change the Let this app run in the background option to Never.
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Restart your system and notice if the issue still persists.

Monitor Memory Leaks

When a program becomes inactive, the system releases the memory space used by the program. It keeps the memory available for another program that you will run. But sometimes, the system fails to return the memory even after the program ends. This is known as a memory leak.

A memory leak can become a serious problem if a system cannot release the standby memory of larger programs for a long time. As the memory is occupied unnecessarily, your computer displays that it is low on memory.

You can use the performance monitor tool available in Windows and inspect if any memory leak is occurring in your system. Then, you can just close the program from the task manager or uninstall them to free up the memory.

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ and type resmon to open Resource Monitor.
  2. Under the Processes list, re-arrange the processes by clicking on the Commit feature. This will bring the applications that use more memory to the top.
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  3. Monitor the Used Memory, Available Memory, and Standby Memory while running the memory-intensive program for some time.
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  4. See if the memory gets freed after closing the program. If not, then close the program from the task manager by following the steps from the earlier section.

You can also use the official RAMMap tool by Microsoft to monitor the memory allocation and leak. If the system does not free the standby memory, you can use RAMMap to empty the memory. Let’s see the way to do it.

  1. Download and Install RAMMap on your system.
  2. Open the application with administrative privilege.
  3. Click on the Empty option at the top and select Empty Standby list.
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This should solve the problem of memory leak and hence, the issue of low memory.

Run Virus Scan

If you do not see any programs that are using more memory and there is no memory leak as well, then your system may be infected by malware. Malware can run in the background remaining invisible to the monitoring tools and using the memory.

So, you should perform a virus scan by using Windows Defender or any paid Antivirus software. However, the antivirus software itself uses a lot of memory. Thus, we advise using the Defender program to scan for malware.

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ and type ms-settings:windowsdefender. Windows Security window will open up.
  2. Click on Virus & Threat Protection.
  3. Find Scan options and check the Full Scan box.
  4. Click Scan now to perform a complete scan of your system.
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See if the memory issue has vanished.

Increase Virtual Memory

Your system has a reserved storage drive space to store the temporary files when the RAM gets filled. This space is known as Virtual Memory or Pagefile. If this memory is also full, then the system can show the “Computer is Low on Memory” warning.

You can increase your system’s virtual memory to get relief from the issue. However, there is a limit to which you can extend the pagefile and have enough space on your storage disk. Let’s see the proper way to do it.

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ and type sysdm.cpl in the Run dialog box. The System Properties window will open up.
  2. Go to the Advanced tab and click on Settings under the Performance menu.
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  3. Select the Advanced tab and click on Change under Virtual Memory.
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  4. Uncheck the Automatically manage the paging file size for all drives.
  5. Click on Custom Size. Add the value for Initial and Maximum size slightly more than the recommended value.
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  6. Click Ok to save the changes.

You should find your memory problem solved.

If you are sure that you have enough memory to run the programs, then you can check the Automatically manage the paging file size for all drives option in the System properties above.

Disable Network Diagnostic Usage (NDU)

Many users have experienced the memory leak problem by ndu.sys or Network Diagnostic Usage in Windows. As a result, the system shows the “Computer is Low on Memory” warning.

However, you can solve the issue by disabling the service from the registry. Let’s look at the way to do it. Before you begin, make sure to backup your registry prior to making any changes.

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ and type regedit to open Registry Editor.
  2. Navigate to ComputerHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMControlSet001ServicesNdu.
  3. Double-click on the Start entry on the list.
  4. Set the value to 4 to disable the service.
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  5. Click Ok and restart your system.

Notice whether the error occurs again.

Disable SysMain & User Experience and Telemetry

Caution: These services are crucial Microsoft operations and they work to provide better functioning of your system. If these services are not hogging your memory, DO NOT DISABLE THEM.

SuperFetch works to speed up the operation by preloading the frequently used programs and instructs the storage drive that these programs may be needed soon. But doing this can cause a lot of memory to be occupied, which may lead to a low memory error.

Another service called User Experience and Telemetry collects the diagnostic data and crash reports. It sends them as feedback for performance improvement of the system. These two services consume a lot of RAM space and cause low memory issues.

You can disable these features if they are using much memory in your system. Let’s perform the operation together.

  1. Enter services.msc after pressing Windows + ‘R’ to open the Services window.
  2. Find SysMain and double-click on it.
  3. Choose Manual in the Startup type option and click Stop.
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  4. Click Apply and Ok.
  5. Similarly, find Connected User Experiences and Telemetry and do the same for it as well.
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Restart your system to find the memory issue vanished.

Run SFC and CHKDSK Scan

If some system files are corrupt or behaving improperly, they may be using more memory than they require. Windows System File Checker (SFC) scan helps detect any problems in the system files and fixes them. This can help in fixing the memory leak that may be causing the issue of low memory.

Furthermore, if the storage drive that is assigned for the virtual memory has some error, then the allotted memory may not be used properly. As a result, you may be seeing the warning of low memory. A CHKDSK scan will further help by solving the error on the disk drives.

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ to open the Run dialog box and enter cmd.
  2. Press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to open Command Prompt in administrative privilege.
  3. Type SFC /scannow to run an sfc scan on your system. It will detect any error and solve it automatically.
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  4. Restart the system.
  5. Run chkdsk /r /x in the command prompt to perform a CHKDSK scan on the next start.
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You should find the warning go away.

Update Drivers

Sometimes, faulty driver software can cause excessive memory leaks, making the system believe it has no memory left. So, updating or rolling back the drivers can do the job in such cases.

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ and type devmgmt.msc to open Device Manager.
  2. Select a device and double-click on it.
  3. Go to the Drivers tab and click Update Drivers.
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  4. Click Rollback drivers if the problem started after an update.
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  5. Do this for all the devices to see if the problem goes away.

Windows updates the drivers automatically through windows updates. So, you can see if any updates are pending and install them to fix the issue.

Add More Memory

As we mentioned at the start, your RAM may not be sufficient to handle all the programs that you work on. So, you can consider extending the RAM size. However, you should first look if your system allows adding more RAM.

A computer that runs on a 32-bit system type does not support adding RAM to more than 4 GB. Similarly, if your system is x64 type, but the Windows is 32-bit, then adding more RAM would be useless. Please follow the instructions to see your system type.

  1. Enter msinfo32 in the Run dialog box after pressing Windows + ‘R’.
  2. Find System Type and see if it is an x64 or x86-based PC.
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  3. Similarly, press Windows + ‘X’ and select Settings.
  4. Look for the About option and see if the operating system is 64-bit or 32-bit.
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But there is a way to expand your memory beyond 4 GB in 32-bit system: By configuring the PAE/NX Settings. Let’s move towards doing it.

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ and type cmd.
  2. Open the command prompt with administrative privilege by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Enter.
  3. Enter bcdedit and look at the identifier at the top.
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  4. Enter the commands given below and execute them one by one.
    bcdedit /set [{identifier}] pae ForceEnable
    bcdedit /set [{identifier}] nx AlwaysOff

Now, expand the memory as per your requirement. This should solve the problem of low memory warning.

Can I disable the “Computer is Low on Memory” Warning?

If you are sure that your system has enough memory and it is a false alarm, you can disable the warning. But disabling it may prevent you from knowing if the memory is consumed too much. This can lead to exceeding the RAM capacity, and the system may crash.

You can disable the low memory warning in the following ways:

  1. Press Windows + ‘R’ and type regedit to open Registry Editor.
  2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetContro lWDIDiagnosticModules.
  3. Find the registry keys
    5EE64AFB-398D-4edb-AF71-3B830219ABF7
    45DE1EA9-10BC-4f96-9B21-4B6B83DBF476
    C0F51D84-11B9-4e74-B083-99F11BA2DB0Aand delete each one of them.
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  4. Restart your system to apply the changes.

You will not receive the warning for low memory in your system.

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