"Your Computer Does Not Have Enough Free Memory to Defrag the Drive" Error Message

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Article ID: 229154
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When you try to run Disk Defragmenter (Defrag.exe) or ScanDisk (Scandskw.exe), you may receive one of the following error messages:
Your computer does not have enough free memory to defrag the drive. Quit one or more programs.
ID# Defrag009
ScanDisk could not continue because your computer does not have enough available memory.


This problem may occur if either of the following conditions is true:
  • You are running Windows on a hard disk that is larger than 8 gigabytes (GB) and that has a cluster size that is smaller than 8 kilobytes (KB).

    This configuration may occur if you use a third-party disk tool to create a partition on a hard disk that is larger than 8 GB and that has a cluster size that is smaller than 8 KB.

  • You are running Windows on a very large hard disk that has a default Windows cluster size of 32 KB.


To resolve these problems, upgrade your Windows operating system to Microsoft Windows XP or later.


To work around these problems, do one of the following, as appropriate to your situation:
  • Contact the manufacturer of the third-party hard disk tool for information about an update to the software that resolves this problem.

    For more information about hardware and software vendor contact information, visit the following Microsoft Web site: http://support.microsoft.com/gp/vendors
  • Repartition your large hard disk into smaller partitions.

    For additional information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    255867 How to Use the Fdisk Tool and the Format Tool to Partition or Repartition a Hard Disk

More information

The standard FAT32 cluster size of 4,096 bytes applies only to hard disks that are smaller than 8 GB. The third-party hard disk tool may change the cluster size to 4,096 bytes per allocation unit.

The default cluster sizes are listed in the following table:
Collapse this tableExpand this table
Hard disk size Cluster size
512 MB to 8 GB4 KB
8 GB to 16 GB8 KB
16 GB to 32 GB16 KB
32 GB and larger32 KB


Article ID: 229154 - Last Review: June 22, 2014 - Revision: 6.0
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