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How to Solve Windows 10 High RAM Memory Usage Issue [10 Fixes]

Updated by Cedric on Apr 16, 2021
Written by Brithny

Don't worry if your computer gets stuck and Windows Task Manager warns "High memory usage". On this page, we will guide you to easily fix high memory usage issue in Windows 10/8/7 with the following resolutions:

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Fix 1. Close Unnecessary Programs On Task Manager, find running programs that take high memory, click End Task...Full steps
Fix 2. Disable Programs from Startup On Task Manager, go to Startup, right-click to disable big programs from Startup...Full steps
Fix 3. Defragment Hard Drive Type dfrgui in Search, open Defragment and Optimize Drives, select drives to Optimize...Full steps
Fix 4. Fix File System Error Run EaseUS Partition Master, right-click drives to fix file system error...Full steps
More Fixes... Other 6 fixes are available here for you to follow and fix high RAM memory errors...Full steps

What is High Memory Usage?

High Memory Usage is a state that Windows computers' RAM, ROM, or Cache usage grows to an extremely high level. Windows 10 high memory usage error is related to RAM and virtual memory.

High memoru usage and low memory warning

When the PC has a high memory usage error, it will freeze while running a program and pops up an error message, warning that "Your computer is low on memory".

Follow to check if you are having this error and what caused high memory usage.

Define High Memory Usage Windows 10 Error:

Try the following steps to define if your computer is with high memory usage, high CPU, or high disk usage error:

Step 1. Press Ctrl + Alt + Del keys and select "Task Manager".

Step 2. At the Process tab, check the usage state of CPU, Memory, and Disk.

If the Memory column displays 70%, 80%, 90%, or 99% used as the two figures shown below, it's a "High Memory Usage" issue.

High Memory Usage in Processes:

Open Task Manager

High Memory Usage in Performance:

Check memory usage state in task manager

Symptoms and Causes of High Memory Usage:

So what will happen when your computer is caught with a high memory usage issue? And what causes this error? Check it out.

Symptoms of High Memory Usage Causes of High Memory Usage
  • Computer slows down
  • Applications won't respond
  • File transfer stuck, programs/software get stuck
  • Unable to download or upload files, programs
  • Registry hack
  • Virus attack
  • Disk file system error
  • Low space due to high usage by multiple apps or big installation patches.
  • Running too many programs at one time
  • Insufficient physical and virtual memory
  • Too many programs start in the startup

10 Fixes for High (RAM) Memory Usage Issue in Windows 10

So how to fix "high memory usage" or "High RAM memory usage" issues? How do I reduce or fix the high memory usage in Windows 10?

Here is a list of all tested fixes, just follow to fix high memory usage Windows 10 issues immediately:

  1. 1. Close Unnecessary Running Programs/Applications
  2. 2. Disable Startup Programs
  3. 3. Defragment Hard Drive & Adjust Best Performance
  4. 4. Fix Disk File System Error
  5. 5. Increase Virtual Memory
  6. 6. Disable Superfetch service
  7. 7. Set Registry Hack
  8. 8. Increase Physical Memory
  9. 9. Disable NDU in Registry
  10. 10. Clean Up Virus

If you are having a similar problem in older Windows OS, like Windows XP, you can also give these fixes a try.

Method 1. Close Unnecessary Running Programs/Applications

When your computer is with high memory usage, you can try to close some unnecessary running programs and applications to fix this issue.

Step 1. Open Task Manager by right-clicking on the Windows icon and select "Task Manager".

Step 2. Go to the process tab, find the running programs that are taking high memory but you don't need it at all.

Step 3. Click the unnecessary programs and select "End Task".

Close unnecessary programs

Method 2. Disable Programs Running from Startup

Disabling programs running from Startup will effectively decrease the system load and saving quite a lot of CPU memory space.

Step 1. Press Ctrl + Alt + Del keys, select "Task Manager".

Step 2. Click on "Startup" in Task Manager, right-click the applications that you don't want to run from Startup, and select "Disable".

Disable programs from startup

Method 3. Defragment Hard Drive & Adjust for Best Performance

It will also help to save quite a lot of memory space by defragmenting hard drives. You can also refer to a manual way to defrag and optimize the disk for its best performance.

Defragment hard drives:

Step 1. Press "Windows + R", type: dfrgui, click "Defragment and Optimize Drives" to open this app.

Step 2. Click on the hard drives (C: drive for example) you want to defragment and click "Optimize".

Defrag hard drive

Wait for the process to finish the defragment process. Do remember to restart the computer when the process completes.

Adjust for the best performance:

Step 1. Right-click "This PC" and select "Properties".

Step 2. Click "Advanced system settings", click "Settings" under Performance.

Step 3. Check "Adjust for best performance", click "Apply" and "OK" to confirm.

Adjust best performance for high memory usage issue

Method 4. Fix Disk File System Error

File system error is a major reason that may cause high memory usage or high CPU usage on Windows 10/8/7 computers. Professional partition manager software - EaseUS Partition Master can easily fix the error and get rid of it from your PC. It's easy for all levels of Windows users. 

Check and Fix System Error 

Method 5. Increase Virtual Memory

Virtual memory makes use of part of disk space to serve as memory so as to release computer memory stress. Therefore, when your computer is with high memory usage issue, you can try the following steps to increase virtual memory:

Step 1. Right-click on This PC, select "Properties". 

Step 2. Click "Advanced system settings" in the pop-up window.

Step 3. Go to the Advanced tab, click "Settings..." under the Performance section.

Increase virtual memory

Step 4. Navigate to the Advanced tab, click "Change" under the Virtual memory section.

Change virutal memory size

Step 5. Uncheck "Automatically manage paging file size for all drives".

Step 6. Select C drive, check "No page file", and click "Set". 

Step 7. Click "Yes" to continue.

Confirm to increase virutal memory

Step 8. Select a non-system partition, check "Custom size", and set the same value in Initial Size and Maximum Size. 

The value size is recommended to be twice big as the physical memory on your computer.

Step 9. Click "Set" and "OK" to save the changes.

Save changes to increase virtual memory

Method 6. Disable Superfetch Service

Step 1. Press Windows + R, type services.msc into the Run box and click "OK".

Step 2. Locate and right-click "Superfetch" > select "Properties" > click "Stop" on the pop-up windows.

Step 3. Click "Disabled" from the 'startup type' drop-down menu.

fix service host superfetch high disk usage - disable superfetc in service

Method 7. Set Registry Hack

This method will release some virtual memory on your computer by deleting page files in the Registry. Here is how to do so:

Step 1. Press Windows + R keys, type regedit to open the Registry Editor.

Step 2. Navigate to: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Control/Session Manager/Memory Management.

Step 3. Find and right-click ClearPageFileAtShutDown, select to modify its value to "1" and click "OK".

Set registry hack to fix high memory usage

Method 8. Increase Physical Memory

Logically, when your computer is with a high memory usage issue, you can add a new memory card to your computer so to extend the physical memory.

You need to first check out the memory type by referring to the parameters of memory on your computer. Here is how to increase a physical memory on your PC:

Step 1. Check the physical memory size: Right-click on This PC and select "Properties".

Step 2. Open Task Manager and go to the Performance tab, click "Memory".

Step 3. Check out the speed, size of the memory to decide which type you'll need.

Check physical memory type

Step 4. Then purchase a new memory card, add it to your PC.

After adding the new memory to your computer, restart the PC and it will automatically detect the new memory.

Method 9. Disable NDU in Registry

Note: EaseUS technical support experts say this method may affect the usage of internet connection. 

If you would like to try, here are the steps:

Step 1. Type regedit in Windows Search and click Registry Editor to open it.

Step 2. Go to: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/ControlSet001/Services/Ndu.

Open registry

Step 3. Right-click on the Start DWORD and select "Modify". 

Modify NDU WORD

Step 4. Change its value to 4, click "OK" to save the changes.

Disable NDU to fix high memory usage

After this, restart your PC and the high memory usage issue should be resolved.

If your computer internet connection gets disabled, we suggest you repeat the steps and change the Start word value back to the previous number - 2. 

Method 10. Clean Up Virus

Sometimes, virus infection or malware may also take up high usage of memory on your PC. The best way out is to run antivirus software on you PC to clean up all existing virus, and malware immediately:

Step 1. Download and install anti-virus software on your computer.

Step 2. Run the anti-virus software and choose to scan your whole computer drive.

Step 3. Select to clean up all found virus or virus-infected files or devices.

Bonus Tips: How to Avoid High Memory Usage Issue on Windows 10

After you fixing Windows high memory usage on Windows 10/8/7, some of you may want to know how to prevent this issue from happening again.

Here, we'll offer tips to protect your Windows 10 computer from this issue. 

How to Avoid High Memory Usage in Windows 10 - Tips

Here are some tips that you can follow to avoid high memory usage issues in Windows 10/8/7. See how to set your computer with the best performance: 

  1. #1. Add a big enough memory card to the PC
  2. #2. Run virus cleaner regularly
  3. #4. Disable unnecessary programs from Startup
  4. #5. Release virtual memory from hard drive
  5. #6. Fix file system error and defrag hard drive regularly

You May Also Interest In:

Some of you may also want to know how to define High CPU or High Disk Usage errors. Here are the steps"

Step 1. Hold Ctrl+Alt+Del keys, click "Task Manager".

Step 2. On the Processes tab, check the Memory or the Disk usage state:

Computer with high CPU usage issue

  • The Disk column shows high usage or even displays 100%, it's a "High Disk Usage" issue. Follow 100% Disk Usage to fix this problem.

Disk shows high usage

Take Action, Keep Your Computer from High Memory Usage Issue

On this page, we provide tips to help you define whether your computer has high memory issues. And we also collected 10 practical fixes to resolve high memory usage Windows 10 error, and listed tips to help you avoid this issue.

Besides managing RAM and virtual high memory usage issues, we also suggest you apply EaseUS disk management software to make your computer running smoothly again. EaseUS Partition Master helps to manage partitions, make full use of disk space and optimize disk performance to the best state.

Now it's your turn. Take action and keep your computer from the high memory usage issue, making it running smoothly again. 

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Updated by Cedric

Cedric Grantham is one of the senior editors of EaseUS who lives and works in Chengdu, China. He mainly writes articles about data recovery tutorials on PC and Mac and how-to tips for partition management. He always keeps an eye on new releases and likes various electronic products.

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Written by Brithny

Brithny is a technology enthusiast, aiming to make readers' tech life easy and enjoyable. She loves exploring new technologies and writing technical how-to tips. On her spare time, she loves sharing things about her favorite singer - Taylor Swift on her Facebook or Twitter.

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