Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Out of Memory Errors when Accessing the VBA Editor.

Out of Memory Errors when Accessing the VBA Editor

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated August 27, 2021)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


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 (3325) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) 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. ...

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