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Issue #584: Sept 30 – Oct 6, 2018

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Q: With the latest Windows 10 update, Photoshop Elements 14 is not allowing me save my edited photos. I get the following message.

 “Could not save as [filename] because there is not enough memory (RAM).”

 I had no problems until the latest update. I went online and found that a lot of people are having issues.  I have seen several fixes online where you go into the computer registry, but I have been hesitant to do that and have been restoring the computer to an earlier time as a temporary fix.  Do you know of a workaround or when Adobe or Microsoft might fix this issue?

 – Linda M.
Niceville, Florida

A: As someone in one of the help forums said “There are so many posts about this problem, they must certainly know about it by now.”  That is probably a true and correct statement.  However, history has shown me that, at least with Microsoft, they usually aren’t in a very big hurry to fix problems that people complain about even in Microsoft products, much less worrying about problems in other vendors’ software.  So, if you want to restore your ability to access your pictures, I would suggest you take matters into your own hands, rather than wait for either Adobe or Microsoft to come to the rescue.

The problem “not enough memory” seems pretty cut and dried.  I’m not saying I agree with a software engineering style that doesn’t seem to be able to work within the bounds of available space to get the job done.  But Adobe apparently has a different engineering philosophy than me, and they’ve chosen to have their software symbolically throw up its hands in defeat when it detects what it considers an insufficient amount of available memory, rather than do some memory swapping, or other technique to ensure their software doesn’t let its users down.

But, you say, it used to work!  Well, yes, but with each new feature, and with each patch, the combined memory requirements for your system grow a little bit more.  The specs you cited to me in your contact information said your PC has 4 GB of RAM.  That’s not a lot by the current measure of a PC.  Oh, it can run Windows, and many other applications, but you’re going to take a performance hit from use of virtual memory, and in certain cases, you might run into an outright failure, as it seems you have done.  You have probably been running on the bleeding edge of your system’s capability for a while now, and with this latest update, the balance finally tipped.

Outside of adding more RAM to your computer, or better yet, upgrading to a new one (Christmas sales are right around the corner!) there are two things that I know of that can affect this issue for you.  One thing you should do is check that Photoshop has been configured to use the most memory possible.  In Photoshop, click Main->Edit and visit the “Preferences” tab.  Clock on “Performance” and find the “Photoshop memory usage” slider.  Make sure it’s cranked up to 100%.

The second option is the one that you already mentioned: making a registry modification.  Working in the registry can be a bit daunting, but by following a few simple guidelines, it can be done with relative safety.  Always back-up the registry before you start.  This is easily accomplished in Regedit by making sure the root node of the tree is highlighted, then selecting File->Export, from the menu.  Second, only touch the parts of the Registry you’re working on.  Don’t poke around elsewhere, and don’t be tempted to clean house and start deleting things.

I read a lot of the same message boards that you probably read, and saw a lot of “this worked for me” chatter in the forums, so this problem seems quite fixable if you can just bring yourself to dive in and make the attempt.  Make your back-up then go for it.  Good luck!

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