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Re: st: Stata SE 11.1 memory problem

From   Rebecca Pope <>
Subject   Re: st: Stata SE 11.1 memory problem
Date   Fri, 25 Feb 2011 23:23:45 -0600

To add to Eric's comments about operating systems:
I am using Windows 7 6-bit Professional, and when I first got my
computer, I couldn't access all of the memory. So, it is still
possible to not have access to all of the physical memory for your
computer, even when the operating system is _supposed_ to allow you to
access it. In my case, it turned out that something had gotten messed
up in the configuration process at the manufacturer and although I had
8GB of memory installed, the Windows OS only recognized 2GB. Some
setting or something wasn't right; I don't pretend to understand how
Windows works/does not work with respect to how it recognizes and
allocates memory. However, tech support on my campus was able to do
something to fix it, so you might want to check with whomever provides
tech support for your computer if you find a problem.

You don't say which OS you're using, but if it's Windows 7, here's how
you can check the amount of memory the computer recognizes: Control
panel > System and security > System

It will tell you how much memory is installed and how much is
available for program use (i.e. not reserved for the OS). You might
want to make sure that all the memory you bought is recognized. Also,
check out the "Memory" tab of the Resource Manager (reached through
Task Manager) too. It will show you how much memory is in use, how
much is on "standby" (whatever that means), and how much is "free". In
my experience, Stata can take up to standby+free. There is a portion I
can never access and a portion that is marked as "modified". Even if
I've closed other programs, some of the "modified" remains unavailable
until I restart. Such is life with Windows.

As an aside:
You say your large data set is 244MB and the other is "small",
presumably less than 244 MB. If that's the case, I don't see why you
should need to allocate more than 1300 MB. Stata doesn't necessarily
perform better with more memory


On Fri, Feb 25, 2011 at 8:58 PM, Eric Booth <> wrote:
> <>
> On Feb 25, 2011, at 6:50 PM, <> wrote:
>> Thank you for your answer. I have 6GB RAM. I am running nothing else than
>> Stata. I have the threads but no help.
> What type of OS are you running?  One of the threads I mentioned includes some mention about 64-bit OS's that still limit users to 2 or 4 GB (e.g., Win7 Starter) (see:   and  ) .
> Also, you may have not opened any programs, but there are always things running in the background (again, _possibly_ enough to take up 700mb of memory and leave you ~ 1300mb to work with (?) ).   In the first thread link I provided, the Stata technical support response mentions how to look at your task manager (or your OS's equivalent)  to examine your system resources before starting Stata and while trying to set the memory in Stata.
>> One of the files I have is 244 Mb,
>> the other one is small. Is there a way to tell to the operating system to
>> devote more memory to Stata? I am using very typical financial databases,
>> therefore there is probably a way to work with these datasets.
>  A few years ago, when I was running WinXP (with Stata 9 or 10), I had some luck getting  higher memory allocation by "stepping up" my memory -- try running this code and see if it hits the same 1300m ceiling:
> ********************!
> clear
> forval n = 100(100)6000 {
>        qui set mem `n'm
>        qui query mem
>        di in y  "`r(memory)'"
> }
> memory
> ********************!
> If you only need a subset of this data you could specify that in your -use- statement (e.g.,  - use var1-var5 using "myfile.dta", clear - ), but that doesn't solve your issue.
> __
> Eric A. Booth
> Public Policy Research Institute
> Texas A&M University
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