Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007 and 2010. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Out of Memory Errors when Accessing the VBA Editor.

Out of Memory Errors when Accessing the VBA Editor

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 19, 2018)

4

Chris wrote about a problem he is having with VBA. It seems that he's getting the error message "out of memory" when attempting to access the VBA editor. He's tried closing all other applications, checked for background programs, and he has ample disk space. The error message even occurs in workbooks with relatively small procedures.

It could, realistically, be any number of conditions causing the problem. Because of this, it can be hard to track down the cause. There are a couple of clues that suggest that the problem may be due to either an add-in or to a problem with your macro modules.

You can figure out if it is an add-in by simply starting Excel with all the add-ins disabled. Add them back in, one at a time, until you notice the error again cropping up. You will then have a pretty good idea that the problem is caused by the last add-in you enabled.

If the problem is not due to your add-ins, then you should suspect your macro modules. If you spend a lot of time editing your modules, they can become corrupted over time. (This has been a known problem for some time in VBA.) You can usually get around this problem by recreating the workbook in which the problem occurs. Copy the worksheets from the old to the new workbook, and then use the VBA export and import capabilities to move the macro modules from the old workbook to the new one.

A good discussion on memory problems with Excel can be found at these pages:

http://www.decisionmodels.com/memlimitsc.htm

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (11196) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Out of Memory Errors when Accessing the VBA Editor.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Word Counts for a Group of Documents

Getting a word count for a single document is easy. Getting an aggregate word count for a large number of documents can ...

Discover More

Hyperlinks in Comments

Need to add a hyperlink to a comment? It's easy to do by following the steps outlined in this tip.

Discover More

Grabbing the MRU List

The MRU (most recently used) list informs you which documents were the last to be opened and edited in Word. You can ...

Discover More

Save Time and Supercharge Excel! Automate virtually any routine task and save yourself hours, days, maybe even weeks. Then, learn how to make Excel do things you thought were simply impossible! Mastering advanced Excel macros has never been easier. Check out Excel 2010 VBA and Macros today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Determining a Random Value

Random values are often needed when working with certain types of data. When you need to generate a random value in a ...

Discover More

Maximum Length Limit for a Macro

Make your macros too long, and Excel may just refuse to run them at all. This tip explains what the limit is for macros, ...

Discover More

Running Macros in the Background

Want to run a macro in Excel, but not sure if doing so will tie up your computer? Here's how macro processing really happens.

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 0 + 1?

2018-07-19 15:57:53

Linda

I don't know if Dee had problems just with the VBA Editor and the out of memory issue, or with only opening the file. Even without macros in the workbook I have to constantly remind co-workers not to format the entire worksheet, as it makes the file huge. If there are multiple worksheets in the workbook the file size can get out of control quickly when entire worksheets are formatted.


2018-07-19 13:42:41

Dave

Dee, try starting Excel in safe mode (eg, hold down the Ctrl key), and see if that eliminates the message.


2015-10-31 14:59:28

Dee

I don't have any active add-ins and I have never added a macro. Why would I be getting this message? My computer shows that I have plenty of memory. I closed all my running applications and restarted my computer, starting only the tiny excel file I'm using and I still get the message.


2014-10-15 09:17:27

Shandor

Good ideas except when moving your macros it's easier to paste them into a new module (easily created in the new workbook) if you keep them in a Word doc or text file. If you email this to yourself your macro collection will always be safe for reuse.


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.