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Re: st: Op. sys. refuses to provide memory - a cautionary tale


From   Kibrom Tafere <kibtaf@gmail.com>
To   statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu
Subject   Re: st: Op. sys. refuses to provide memory - a cautionary tale
Date   Tue, 9 Mar 2010 15:41:11 +0300

Thanks a lot.
Great post! It is an interesting explantion to the problem many of us face
everyday.

Kibrom

On Tue, Mar 9, 2010 at 3:16 PM, Craig, Benjamin M. <
Benjamin.Craig@moffitt.org> wrote:

> This posting is based on my recent experience with STATA MP 11 and may
> be useful to those who wish to have more memory.
>
> My modest six-month-old Dell PC has 4 GB RAM. Under Stata 9.2, I was
> able to set memory to 935MB (see below), but when I installed Stata 11,
> the memory was reduced by 50% (470MB). Adjusting the boot.ini or closing
> programs had no effect, so I contacted the Stata help desk via email and
> received the prompt and effective response (below).
>
> The end of the story is that after a day of tinkering I was able to
> increase Stata MP 11 memory to 725MB by installing Windows Service Pack
> 3. And, I intend to buy a 64-bit machine, once budget allows.
>
> I attribute this issue to Windows, not Stata; however, I hope that this
> posting clarifies the issue for other Stata users, particularly those
> purchasing a new machine or considering an upgrade to Stata 11.
>
> Cheers,
> Ben
>
> Under State 9.2
> . qui for X in numlist 100(5)1000: capture set mem Xm . query mem
>
> Current memory allocation
>
>                    current                                 memory usage
>    settable          value     description                 (1M = 1024k)
>    --------------------------------------------------------------------
>    set maxvar         5000     max. variables allowed           1.733M
>    set memory          935M    max. data space                935.000M
>    set matsize         400     max. RHS vars in models          1.254M
>                                                            -----------
>                                                               937.987M
>
> Under Stata MP 11
> . qui for X in numlist 100(5)1000: capture set mem Xm . query mem
>
> Current memory allocation
>
>                    current                                 memory usage
>    settable          value     description                 (1M = 1024k)
>    --------------------------------------------------------------------
>    set maxvar         5000     max. variables allowed           1.909M
>    set memory          470M    max. data space                470.000M
>    set matsize         400     max. RHS vars in models          1.254M
>                                                            -----------
>                                                               473.163M
>
> Under Stata MP 11 after installing Windows service pack 3
> . qui for X in numlist 100(5)1000: capture set mem Xm . query mem
>
> Current memory allocation
>
>                    current                                 memory usage
>    settable          value     description                 (1M = 1024k)
>    --------------------------------------------------------------------
>    set maxvar         5000     max. variables allowed           1.909M
>    set memory          725M    max. data space                725.000M
>    set matsize        6900     max. RHS vars in models        363.815M
>                                                            -----------
>                                                             1,090.724M
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Stata Technical Support [mailto:tech-support@stata.com]
> Sent: Monday, March 08, 2010 3:00 PM
> To: Craig, Benjamin M.
> Subject: Re: Op. sys. Refuses to provide memory
>
> Dear Ben,
>
> What is your Windows XP service pack?  The problem you are describing
> sounds like the memory issues that Windows XP Service pack 2 had until
> Microsoft fixed it with the release of Service pack 3.  It is important
> to remember that all memory management is handled by the operating
> system.  Thus, when you try to increase the amount of RAM reserved for
> Stata, it is the operating system that tells you it can't give you any
> more memory.
>
> Now besides the Windows XP Service pack 2 memory management issues, all
> 32-bit operating systems have trouble allocating large blocks of RAM to
> any single application.  And since Stata requires a contiguous block of
> RAM, meaning that the block of RAM must have contiguous adressing, this
> issue becomes even more problematical.  A 32-bit operating system can
> only theoretically allocate 2 GBs of RAM addressing to any one
> application.  However, in practicality, the actual amount of continuous
> RAM addressing that can be allocated to any one given application is
> around 1 GB of RAM for a 32-bit Windows XP operating system.
>
> **It is important to know that this upper allocation limit does not
> increase by simply adding more RAM to the system because we are talking
> about a contiguous block of RAM, and not just total available RAM.
>
> As for Stata 9 having a larger block of RAM allocation that Stata 11
> does, this is due to Stata 9's smaller footprint.  Since Stata 11 uses
> more RAM just to be up and running, this translates into less of the
> contiguous block of RAM that is leftover for loading datasets.
>
> There are two options for increasing the amount of contiguous RAM that
> can be allocated to Stata:
>
>        1)  Go into the Windows Task manager and shutdown as many
> unnecessary programs as you can in an attempt to free up more system
> resources.
>
>        2)  Load Stata 11 onto a 64-bit operating system, which won't
> have the same memory restrictions that a 32-bit operating system has.
>
>
>
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>
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