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Excel Memory Issue - Cannot Complete Task With Available Resources

    Question

  • I'll spell out as many details as I can, because I have no clue which direction to take this.

    We have 3 accountants here that do the same basic job function and work with the same spreadsheets. Two have laptops, one has a desktop.

    The one with the desktop has had this desktop for at least a year. They all work with Excel 2007 on Windows 7 Professional. About 3 months ago, some renovations were done to the office and all 3 users were moved to a different location (and thus different cabling).

    Right around this time, the desktop user began experiencing this error "Excel cannot complete this task with available resources. Choose less data or close other applications." It first happened with a very large spreadsheet with a lot of pivot tables along with other spreadsheets being opened, so he figured he had too much open and closed out and reopened, probably solved (seemingly).

    Shortly thereafter, the same error occured while opening a smaller spreadsheet, and very few spreadsheets being open. I looked into the error and tried a few fixes (reinstalling Office, providing a brand new desktop, also Windows 7 Pro, recreating user profile, deleting Excel .xlb and .pip files, changing out network cables), I found that Excel 2003, 2007, and 2010 32-bit have a 2GB memory limitation. Upon seeing this I tried recreating the issue, and after opening a dozen or so Excel files I watched the Excel.exe process in Task Manager reach ~1,800,000 kb and then the error would occur. In order to get the process to reach this limit I either had to open 50+ small files (100-300kb) or about 10-12 huge files (40-50Mb). I advised the user to keep an eye on how many files he has open at once.

    The problem began to occur again with fewer and fewer Excel files. We upgraded him to Excel 2010 64-bit (as its memory limit is much much higher than 2GB)... Today, he opened an Excel file (also small, about 131kb) and opened a second one about the same size. Upon opening the second, I watched the excel.exe process skyrocket to 4GB (how much memory he has in his machine). His whole machine was nearly frozen for about 3-4 minutes when I saw the process drop back down to about ~15,000kb. He opened the same file on another machine run Windows XP with Excel 2007 and the file opened fine. The other 2 users (running laptops with Win 7 Pro and Excel 2007) can also open all the same files without issue.

     

    This has me stumped. If anyone has any insight, please help.

    Ben

    • Moved by Liliane Teng Wednesday, October 26, 2011 8:13 AM (From:Excel for Developers)
    Friday, October 14, 2011 8:43 PM

Answers

  • Some more things to try:

    - uninstall all addins and COM addins (especially things like Google desktop)

    - delete all temp files (%temp%)

    - look for all .exd files and delete them.


    Charles Excel MVP The Excel Calculation Site http://www.decisionmodels.com/
    Saturday, October 15, 2011 10:58 AM
  • Hi StyleMarkIT,

    Based on your description, it seems that this problem does not relate to Excel programming. I recommend you could try to repost on Answers forum for more suggestions. Thanks for your understanding.

    http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

    Have a nice day.

    Best regards


    Liliane Teng [MSFT]
    MSDN Community Support | Feedback to us
    Get or Request Code Sample from Microsoft
    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help.

    Monday, October 24, 2011 8:05 AM
  • Found out it is a result of an add-in that's not listed in Excel. It's called BExAnalyzer (Business Explorer, a product of SAP). When reports were run using this (which utilizes Excel) then it was adding hidden shapes that seemed to be OK in 2007, but not in 2010. The error appeared in 2007 whenever multiple spreadsheets opened (hitting the limit), but when opened in 2010 under just one spreadsheet, 2010 would freak out over the shapes and the memory usage would spike, resulting in the same error. So, there were 2 issues with the same error which thru me for a loop.

    I'm going to try running the reports (from BexAnalyzer) on 2010 to see if it still generates these hidden shapes, or if it's something specific to 2007.

     

    Either way, it's not an Excel issue per se, but a compatibility issue between Excel and Business Explorer.

     

    Thanks all for your time and help! Looking at add-in's pointed me in the right direction, but the addin doesn't load unless you run the Business Explorer client (which loads in Excel), which is why I didn't see it at first.

     

    Cheers

    Ben

    Wednesday, October 26, 2011 2:45 PM

All replies

  • Some more things to try:

    - uninstall all addins and COM addins (especially things like Google desktop)

    - delete all temp files (%temp%)

    - look for all .exd files and delete them.


    Charles Excel MVP The Excel Calculation Site http://www.decisionmodels.com/
    Saturday, October 15, 2011 10:58 AM
  • Ben, I see you are already in good hands :)

    Have you visited Charles's website? I am talking about this one in particular.

    Topic: Excel Memory Limits
    Link: http://www.decisionmodels.com/memlimitsc.htm
    Sid (A good exercise for the Heart is to bend down and help another up) Please do not email me your questions. I do not answer questions by email unless I get paid for it :) If you want, create a thread in Excel forum and email me the link and I will help you if I can.
    Sunday, October 16, 2011 11:29 AM
  • This is actually the website that I learned about the memory limits on :)

     

    I tried everything Charles said, still no luck. I also tried using msconfig and removing all non-Microsoft services and uninstalling anti-virus.

    No luck.

    Any other suggestions?

    Tuesday, October 18, 2011 6:22 PM
  • Very strange. There has to be something different, but what?

    GDI Objects?

    Swap the desktop and a laptop to see if its dependent on something this particular user does that has not been spotted?


    Charles Excel MVP The Excel Calculation Site http://www.decisionmodels.com/
    Tuesday, October 18, 2011 7:12 PM
  • Hi StyleMarkIT,

    Based on your description, it seems that this problem does not relate to Excel programming. I recommend you could try to repost on Answers forum for more suggestions. Thanks for your understanding.

    http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

    Have a nice day.

    Best regards


    Liliane Teng [MSFT]
    MSDN Community Support | Feedback to us
    Get or Request Code Sample from Microsoft
    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help.

    Monday, October 24, 2011 8:05 AM
  • Found out it is a result of an add-in that's not listed in Excel. It's called BExAnalyzer (Business Explorer, a product of SAP). When reports were run using this (which utilizes Excel) then it was adding hidden shapes that seemed to be OK in 2007, but not in 2010. The error appeared in 2007 whenever multiple spreadsheets opened (hitting the limit), but when opened in 2010 under just one spreadsheet, 2010 would freak out over the shapes and the memory usage would spike, resulting in the same error. So, there were 2 issues with the same error which thru me for a loop.

    I'm going to try running the reports (from BexAnalyzer) on 2010 to see if it still generates these hidden shapes, or if it's something specific to 2007.

     

    Either way, it's not an Excel issue per se, but a compatibility issue between Excel and Business Explorer.

     

    Thanks all for your time and help! Looking at add-in's pointed me in the right direction, but the addin doesn't load unless you run the Business Explorer client (which loads in Excel), which is why I didn't see it at first.

     

    Cheers

    Ben

    Wednesday, October 26, 2011 2:45 PM