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Not enough memory to start windows

Posted on 1998-01-04
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Last Modified: 2013-12-16
I reinstalled Win 95 today.  The drive had Windows on it once before but I began using it as a backup only drive.  To save space I had deleted the Windows and DOS directories.  Today I placed that drive back in service as the main drive and "reinstalled" Windows on it.  WIndows detected that it had been installed before and I selected the option for a full reinstall.

When Windows first starts I get the error message "Not enough memory available to run Windows.  Quit one or more programs or restart your computer."

Config.sys has the following lines:
Device=C:\Windows\Himem.sys
Device=C:\Windows\eMM386.exe RAM ON
Buffers=20,0
Files=20
Devicehigh=C:\Windows\Ramdrive.sys 1000/e

The ONLY thing I am loading in auotexec.bat is DOSKEY.  

If I start with either the RAM drive OR DOSKEY remmed out I can start Windows.  Now I don't really _need_ Doskey but that fact that I get this error leads me to beleive that something else is wrong.  I have used a similar configuration on the last master drive with no problem.  If I boot into Windows via safe-mode I have no trouble starting Windows. MSKB indicates that the error message results when a RAM drive is defined oas being over 15 megs, but I am well under that.

Running  P75, stealth video card, SB 16 sound card, ComStar 33.6 modem, 32 megs RAM, Conner 540 HD.

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Question by:Kuba
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dew_associates earned 280 total points
ID: 1752971
Hi Kuba, welcome back!

Change your config.sys to this and try it:

Device=C:\Windows\Himem.sys
Device=C:\Windows\eMM386.exe NOEMS
Dos=HIGH,UMB
Buffers=30,0
Files=40

If this still doesn't take care of the problem, check your Msdos.sys file using wordpad for any errors. Msdos.sys is created from config.sys, autoexec.bat etc.

Dennis
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Author Comment

by:Kuba
ID: 1752972
Hi Dennis,

Sorry to _be_ back <VBG>.  I am assuming that you meant for me to keep the RAM disk line in (which I did).  That was too easy.  Booted just fine.  But a followup question remains.
It looks like I might not need the EMS.  The system has a dedicated use.  When the program was DOS based I needed EMS but a quick test looks like it is not going to be needed in the Win 95 version.  Even so, that config.sys was booting just fine for me for many weeks.  Why doesn't it work now?  
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Expert Comment

by:dew_associates
ID: 1752973
As you begin working with Windows and add various programs, windows needs additional buffering as well as the ability to open more than the basic number of files. By limiting it to 20 or 30, it couldn't fully load the OS. You may not need the Ramdrive entry either. Insert a REM before the line, save the file, reboot and try it!
Dennis

BTW: Your always welcome here, that's what this site is all about!
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Author Comment

by:Kuba
ID: 1752974
The thing with the files is that this was a fresh installation of Windows and should have resulted in fewer files I would think.  I do need the RAM drive.  The program I run uses it to speed things up.  Although I would imagine that as the author completes the conversion from DOS to Windows he may eliminate that need.
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:dew_associates
ID: 1752975
There's no way to anticipate file usuage with Win95. The numbers I gave you are those published in the Win95 Resource Kit.
Dennis
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