I tried everything, Even when I open in Safe Mode, I still get the Low Virtual memoery message and a black screen.
XP was pre installed so I dont have a disk to re install...
Is it dead? Should I take it apart or something?
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Re: Low Virtual Memory problem
For some reason your CPU is not using your RAM for memory. It is going to the .pagesys file, which is a file on your hard drive that holds Virtual Memory. Virtual memory is only used when you run out of RAM. So here are your choices. You are going to need to buy a copy of Windows XP or whatever operating system you want. Then you try two things: First Format your current hard drive to wipe it clean and reload Windows XP. That should clear up your problem if it is a software issue. If that does not work then it is a bad hard drive (but I don't think it is). If it is a hardware issue, your hard drive is corrupt, then you will need to install a new hard drive and then partition, format and load WIndows XP. Either one of those options will get you running again.
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Reboot the computer and when you here the motherboard tone, tap the delete key to see if you can get into the BIOS screen. If the delete key does not work, try F2. If you can get into the BIOS, then there is a chance it is simply a case of a bad setting. Go to the system default...which is probably on the last page of the BIOS screen. Click set default settings and then F10 to save and reboot. Try letting the laptop boot normally. If it does great, if it doesn't, try tapping F8 on a reboot after the sound and see if you can get into the multi-boot menu. If you can see the menu, boot into safe mode with networking. If it does boot into safe mode, try to update the video driver. Go to control panel > device manager > scroll down to video adapters and right click on the adapter listed and update driver. After it is finished, try to reboot normally.
Try to boot into safe mode by tapping F8 when you restart and see the Compaq screen. Once you see the multiboot option screen come up, choose "safe Mode with Networking". When windows boots up into safe mode go to control panel > Power Options > In power schemes tab, look down at system standby and select "never", now go to the Hibernation tab and uncheck the box and hit apply.
Click ok and reboot normally.
If you have at the least 512m of RAM, your laptop should boot without any virtual memory. Anyway, virtual memory is a method of using your hard drive to function as RAM, though much slower. When you have very little RAM, say less than 128m, and without enough hard drive space, you system will not boot.
If you have 512m of RAM or more, your problem maybe more complex to resolve. How much RAM do you have? How big is your drive?
What you need to do next depends on how much RAM you have.
Try booting into safe mode by pressing F8 when boot up starts. Choose safe mode. When it's booted up, right click on "my Computer" and choose properties. Click on advanced and choose the advanced tab. Go to performance and change the settings of Virtual Memory to what Windows Recommends.Restart.
Usually the message about low virtual memory is because there isn't enough RAM and it was using up all the designated space on the hard drive as Virtual memory. (Uses a part of the hard drive like RAM)
That shouldn't account for being unable to boot into any Windows options though.
The one trick with HP computers, you can try is to take the battery out, make sure the Laptop isn't plugged in with an AC adapter then press and hold the power button in for 10 seconds with no power going to the laptop. This is doing a power drain. Then put the battery back in and try to power on and boot up the computer.
When you choose safe mode, does the computer ask which operating system you want to boot into and does it give you the option to choose "Recovery Console"? Or is there an option on the screen with the safe mode options to Choose your Operating System? If not then the recovery console wasn't installed. If you can choose the recovery console, you might be able to replace the failed files that are not allowing the computer to boot into any version of Windows. Unfortunately, the computer isn't reporting which files are the problem, winlogon.exe/userinit.exe/etc.
You can get a hardrive enclosure at a computer store that allows you to put the laptop hard drive in the enclosure, then plug the enclosure into another computer with a USB cable then you can copy the sensitive data onto the other computer.
If you aren't comfortable taking the Hard Drive out yourself, you can take the laptop to a computer store, and they will take the Hard Drive and hook it up to a second computer as a Slave (Secondary Hard Drive) and copy the data over for you
Here's the procedure on how to increase virtual memory of your PC:
Right click on My Computer > left click on Properties > Advanced
> Settings > Advanced. Under Virtual memory left click on Change.
Select (left click) on the Drive on wich Windows XP is installed. In most cases this will be Drive C.
Space available: Select the radio button labeled: Custom size:
play it safe, in both the Initial (MB)size: and Maximun size: dialogue
boxes type 2560 (i.e. allocate 2.5GB for the pagefile) provided you
have the free memory space to spare. If you don't have enough free
memory available enter the amount of memory you can spare, and
meanwhile seriously consider getting a larger Hard Drive.
is set to 4096MB (4GB), max. allowed by XP. This may seem like quite a
lot, but the reason for this is that recent games now require a lot
more real and virtual memory to function correctly, even if you have
2GB of RAM. Having a larger pagefile size does not hurt performance as
such; it only takes up a bit of additional disk space.
After setting the new page file size left click on
OK > OK > OK. Then restart the computer.
The real solution to this is going to involve spending some money to buy some new memory. It should cost about $30-50 depending on type and amount. 256Mb is not enough for Windows and other software to run. I would recommend buying at least 512Mb additional to add. Before you purchase open up your machine and look to see how many memory slots you have and how many are currently used. According to some specs on the internet, here is what you have.
2 (1 bank of 2) Install in pairs
non-removable base memory
Machine name: Dell Dimension 3000 CPU options: Intel Pentium 4 or Intel Celeron Chipset: Intel 865GV Chipset HD Bus: Ultra ATA/100 Front Side Bus options: 800MHz FSB Memory Speed options: PC3200 DDR400 184pin SDRAM DIMM Special notes: The Dimension 3000 has two different bus speeds each of which takes different memory. You cannot mix the speeds. Please check the speed on the memory modules currently installed, or use our "Check Your Computer" to find the correct module.
It is simple enough most anyone can do this themselves, and I could walk you thru it, otherwise you would need to take it somewhere, but my recommendation would be to do it yourself and simply ask me or others here for advice. Let me know if you want help to do this.
1. Check your PC or motherboard manufacture for BIOS upgrade and upgrade BIOS firmware.
2. Try to start your PC in a safe mode by pressing F8 before windows starts. Then select a safe mode with or without network support.
3. If your computer starts in the safe mode, check if your hard drive is not full or close to full. If it is close to full you need to remove some data from your disk. Try to remove temporary files and clear your Recycle Bin. Restart your computer.
4. You might run low on your memory. If your PC doesn't have enough physical memory, windows is creating virtual memory by using space from your hard drive.
5. If neither solution works, try to run a "CHKDSK C: /R" from recovery console.