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st: file size problems

From   Jeph Herrin <>
Subject   st: file size problems
Date   Sat, 19 Aug 2006 19:36:48 -0400

I'm using Stata 9.2 on WinXP (SP2), updated.

I have a file which is 500mb, but when I load it into
Stata, it requires 825mb. That doesn't seem right:

. dir first.dta
500.7M 8/19/06 18:33 first.dta

. u first.dta, clear

. d

Contains data from first.dta
obs: 75,006,197
vars: 3 19 Aug 2006 18:33
size: 825,068,167 (12.6% of memory free)

This is a problem, because WinXp will only allocate 900mb to Stata (anyone
know how to change this? the machine has 4gb). The first thing I want to do
when I load this file is:

. keep if month<mdy(1,1,2000)


no room to add more variables due to width
An attempt was made to add a variable that would have increased the memory required to store an observation beyond
what is currently possible. You have the following alternatives:

1. Store existing variables more efficiently; see help compress.

2. Drop some variables or observations; see help drop. (Think of Stata's data area as the area of a rectangle;
Stata can trade off width and length.)

3. Increase the amount of memory allocated to the data area using the set memory command; see help memory.

I can't drop any other variables (note that there are only 3). Any ideas? In
particular, is there an alternative to "keep" that doesn't add a variable?

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