Computer Help forum


Unknown files clogging up memory.

by santaluciaemilia / June 8, 2011 3:05 AM PDT

Another query re low memory.

There are numerous files in my document folders, and programmes listed in the Control Panel which mean nothing to be as my pc know how is limited and I don't understand all the abbreviations and codes.

Many are, I guess Microsoft updating and installation files, but I've no idea which I'm able to safely delete.How do I know which contain important system information which should NEVER be erased? To be on the safe side, they are still clogging up the memory and probably slowing down the pc whilst awaiting encryption! I wonder if anybody is able to enlighten me with any clues ?

Many thanks.

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Clarification Request
Low memory
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / June 8, 2011 3:23 AM PDT

Please see my note in your other thread about this;;replyPopup#message5145296

We will keep that thread simple, about your photos, and concentrate on your low memory problems here.

First of all, what is the error message or warning message you are receiving? Exact words, if you can please.

Also, other information required.

1] What Operating System are you running?

2] What make and model computer?

3] How much RAM does this computer have?

4] What sized hard disk are you using, and how much is used, and how much is free?

For your information, hard disk is where all your files are permanently stored. But memory, or RAM, is a temporary storage area which is only used when the computer is on. When the computer is turned off, RAM is emptied.


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Low memory
by santaluciaemilia / June 9, 2011 1:40 AM PDT
In reply to: Low memory

Our pc is a DELL Dimension 1100, model no. DEO51 and we use Windows XP Home Edition.

Memory information. Total physical memory: Installed RAM 256 MB
currently used 87.98%

Total memory: 254 MB
Available memory: 42 MB

Size: 34 GB
free space: 5 MB

I'll get back to you on the alerts in due course. It may take some time I'm afraid as the pc is so slow at the moment, presumably partly because it's so clogged up.


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Re: files and memory
by Kees_B Forum moderator / June 9, 2011 2:02 AM PDT
In reply to: Low memory

Files are on the hard drive. If you're right about 5 MB free on a 34 GB drive, it's very full indeed (99.9%). Did you run the Disc Cleanup Wizard (see the part about that in Don't forget to go to the Advanced section and choose "Delete all but the latest system restore point". That easily cleans a few GB generally.

The " numerous files in my document folders" are only your own files. No program puts anything in there, Windows doesn't, Microsoft doesn't. So you're the only one who can delete files you don't need any more.

Finally, 254 MB physical memory isn't much. See if your favorite trusted computer shop can add an additional 256 MB or even upgrade to 1024 GB. That would surely make it faster.

And what do you mean with "encryption"?


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deleted data
by santaluciaemilia / June 17, 2011 10:45 AM PDT
In reply to: Re: files and memory

Hi Mark, I put my latest query on the other post as it was related in that I was unable to delete my duplicate photos with Awesome duplicate photo finder. So it covers both I suppose. The 'data' was documents and folders from our document folders and unused or rarely used programmes from the control panel. I'm afraid there were so many I'm unable to list or remember them all now.
Thankyou for your suggestions. Excuse delay of responses as I'm not able to be at the pc every day and sometimes it's so slow I give up.
So as I said, I am getting a 'out of memory' error when I try to open up Adobe photoshop album.

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low memory
by santaluciaemilia / June 17, 2011 10:58 AM PDT
In reply to: deleted data

Forgot to say thanks for your ideas. Yes, I regularly run disc cleaner wizard when it comes up as a pop up or when I think it necessary, though had forgotten about the 'delete all but the latest system restore point'.so it was good to be reminded of it.Thanks. I also run ccleaner when I think of it . Is it possible to set it(ccleaner)to clean at regular intervals?

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Ahh, Adobe Photoshop "Out of Memory"
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / June 17, 2011 8:46 PM PDT
In reply to: low memory

I agree the two problems are linked, in that that you are dealing with photos, but I still think it was best to separate the two problems. Happy

Now, Adobe Photoshop gives you an "Out of Memory" error. I found something about this here;

When I scrolled down I found the note I have copied below;

Out of memory errors

Camera Raw, as well as other plug-ins and filters in Photoshop, use large contiguous chunks of RAM, sometimes up to 100 MB per image. You may see out of memory errors when these plug-ins cannot access enough contiguous RAM because you don't have enough RAM or the RAM is too fragmented.

If you occasionally get out of memory errors, restart Photoshop to defragment your RAM. If these errors occur frequently, decrease the memory slider in Photoshop in 5% increments to see if giving less memory to Photoshop allows Camera Raw and other filters and plug-ins the amount of contiguous RAM that they need.

I think you may want to read the whole article, and also I think you are going to have to explorer Adobe Photoshop's options, because it mentions a "memory slider", but not where it is. Try that, and see if it helps.

Good luck.


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low memory
by santaluciaemilia / June 17, 2011 11:38 PM PDT

Thanks mark, I'll see if I can locate the memory slider.

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With 256 MB of RAM ...
by Kees_B Forum moderator / June 18, 2011 5:03 AM PDT
In reply to: low memory

in your PC this might be a hopeless task. Adding RAM is the solution.


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with 256 RAM...
by santaluciaemilia / June 19, 2011 7:45 AM PDT
In reply to: With 256 MB of RAM ...

Thanks Kees. I was afraid that might be the case. I've know idea what it would cost, and probably can't afford to do that at the moment, though I suppose there's no harm in getting quotes. I suppose its never free?

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See what says
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / June 19, 2011 9:29 PM PDT
In reply to: with 256 RAM...

Head over to and use their "Crucial System Scanner Tool" to let it scan your system for suitable RAM

We recommend this site often because it can find what RAM is suitable, (naturally there are different types of RAM, just to confuse us 'non-tech' folks), how much could be added, and how much they,, sell it for.

There's no requirement to purchase from them, it just gives information, but I think you will see how cheap it can be to add RAM nowadays. If you can afford additional RAM, go for as much as possible. The performance gain can be significant.


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Adding RAM and ...
by Edward ODaniel / June 18, 2011 12:31 PM PDT
In reply to: low memory

making some room on the hard drive are what you NEED to do with Photoshop. You need LOTS of free space on the hard drive for the Scratch Disk file.

This link might help you understand the scratch disk and I suggest you read the entire page (it is long but worthwhile)

PhotoShop and most other graphics applications are memory intensive and also require rather large amounts of free space on the hard drive for temporary files needed for the application's functions. For instance by default Photoshop allows for 20 UNDO operations and each takes room on the drive. Working with a 2 meg file may well require 100 meg or more disc space as well as a couple hundred meg of dedicated RAM.

There aren't any shortcuts.

All Answers

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Adding RAM
by santaluciaemilia / June 19, 2011 7:56 AM PDT

Hi Edward,
Thankyou for such a full answer. I shall try to read and more to the point study and try to make sense of the article. Thankyou for the reference.It doesn't surprise me that graphic applications take up so much RAM, and that the undo operations would take up so much space.

I can probably delete some photos and possibly more files from the hard drive.

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Reading that link should ...
by Edward ODaniel / June 19, 2011 10:46 AM PDT
In reply to: Adding RAM

indeed help you understand what is going on.

Since you have only 256 meg of RAM installed and it is likely shared with the onboard video here is a link to the type of RAM it would take and the prices relly aren't too bad at all.

You might even get lucky by checking to see if you can find someone giving away some PC2700 or PC3200 RAM with the right specs (your Dell can use 128 meg, 256 meg, 512 meg or 1 GB DIMM modules):

512MB-DDR333 PC2700, 184p DIMM, 2.5v, Sync, CL=2.5

512MB 64x64-400MHz DDR400 PC3200, 184p DIMM, 2.5v, Sync, CL=3.0

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Additional RAM
by santaluciaemilia / June 20, 2011 11:33 AM PDT

Thankyou very much for that information. I shall research it further. freecycle is a good idea.

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