[Fixed!] Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows Error in Excel

Memory issues are fairly common while using the Microsoft Excel program. The user’s productivity is hampered by one of Excel’s error warnings, and fixing the “Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows” problem might be challenging. In this article, we’ll demonstrate 8 possible origins of this issue and several practical solutions to the “Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows” error message in Excel. So, let’s go through the whole article in order to avoid this problem.

Not Enough Memory Error to Delete Rows in Excel: 8 Reasons & Solutions

Excel’s not enough memory problems can appear in a number of ways and impede the user from carrying out the delete operation on rows in Excel.

Reason 01: If Too Many Workbooks Are Active

The number of active Excel workbooks we can have open at once and the number of spreadsheets in each workbook is both constrained by the available RAM. Excel has limited system resources. Microsoft specifies these restrictions in its Excel specifications and limits. Therefore, we risk encountering the Excel error “Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows” if we operate on too many workbooks at once and those workbooks contain too many spreadsheets.

Solution: Large Massive Workbooks into Smaller Ones

To solve this issue, we can make the bigger spreadsheet into a smaller one by splitting multiple sheets into different workbooks. It’s easy and simple. Just follow the steps below.

📌 Steps:

  • At the very beginning, right-click on the tab containing the sheet name.
  • Then, select Move or Copy… on the context menu.

not enough memory to delete rows in excel

This will open the Move or Copy dialog box.

  • Now, select (new book) from the drop-down menu and check the Create a copy box.
  • And, finally, click on the OK button.

If too Many Workbooks are Active

After doing this, this sheet will be copied into a new workbook. And you can operate on this without showing the error message.

Reason 02: Operating in 32-bit Edition of Excel

When working with huge spreadsheets on the 32-bit Excel edition, we could receive the error message “Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows.” In the 32-bit edition, Excel’s virtual destination address is restricted to 2 GB. This implies that it must share space with installed add-ins and Excel programs while working with Excel workbooks. Therefore, a 32-bit edition Excel workbook must be significantly less than 2 GB to provide a smooth workflow free of memory issues.

Solution: Upgrading from 32-bit to 64-bit Version

We must follow the below steps in order to convert from 32-bit to 64-bit:

📌 Steps:

  • First of all, go to the File tab.

Operating in 32-bit Edition of Excel

  • Then, click Account from the menu.

Updating 64 bit Excel to prevent not enough memory to delete rows error

  • Last but not least, choose Update Now from the Update Options.

Operating in 32 bit showing memory issue to delete rows in Excel

By updating the Excel version, this memory issue will be solved.

Reason 03: Having Complex Calculations in a lot of Cells

When we enter rows and columns, copy and paste data, or execute calculations in Excel spreadsheets, an error could result from the recalculation of formulas. Overall, a spreadsheet’s complexity, such as the number of formulas it uses or how it is built, may lead Excel to run out of resources.

Solution: Select a Range with the Appropriate Number of Cells

If the range of our cell is larger than Excel’s maximum of 32,760 cells, we will receive an error message. Therefore, when using Excel, make sure that the cell range is inside the allowed range.

Reason 04: Using Fill Handle Across a Large Area

These error messages will show up when we attempt to replicate or insert formulas into a significant portion of the worksheet if the Excel file is large or contains numerous features. Because the 2 GB limit, or 32,760 source cells, applies to Excel 32-bit versions that are 2007, 2010, and 2013. This error can only be made when working with large portions of the worksheet.

Solution: Set the Calculation Option to Manual

The formulas we use in Excel to calculate results are automatically transferred into other cells. In Excel, we can choose between manually and automatically calculating formulas. Given this:

📌 Steps:

  • First, move to the File tab.

Using Fill Handle Across a Large Area

  • After that, click on Options.

Immediately, the Excel Options dialog box appears before us.

  • Now, go to Formulas, and under Calculation options, select Manual and click OK.

Manual Calculation options to impede not enough memory error in Excel

  • Instead of doing this, you can go to the Formulas tab on the ribbon.
  • Furthermore, select Manual from Calculation Options under the Calculation category.

Setting Manual Calculation Options in Excel

Correspondingly, you are out of this trouble.

Reason 05: Usage of Auxiliary Excel Add-ins

Sometimes we install a lot of add-ins and make use of them. However, we already know that Excel has a memory limit and that these add-ins take up too much RAM. These additional add-ins can therefore display the “Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows” problem.

Solution: Remove Extra Add-ins from Excel

The problem message won’t appear again if you remove the unnecessary add-ins. How to do it:

📌 Steps:

  • Firstly, bring the Excel Options window like before.
  • Then, proceed to the Add-ins tab.
  • Under the Manage section, select Excel Add-ins and click Go.

Usage of Auxiliary Excel Add-ins

In the Add-ins wizard,

  • Firstly, untick all the active add-ins. In this case, we unchecked Exceldemytools.
  • Then, click OK.

Removing Add-ins to prevent not enough memory error in Excel

By removing those extra add-ins, the memory error will be resolved quickly.

Reason 06: Unnecessary Apps Running in Background

The memory of the computer is completely consumed by other software, leaving Excel with insufficient capacity to function.

Solution: Close These RAM Consuming Programs

We might not require other programs while working with Excel. Follow these actions to terminate those programs:

📌 Steps:

  • Initially, right-click on the Taskbar.
  • Then, click on Task Manager.

Unnecessary Apps Running in Background

This will take you to the Task Manager dialog box.

  • Now, select the program that you don’t need while working on an Excel file.
  • Following this, click on End Task.

These extra programs will end, which will fix the memory issue.

Reason 07: Saving File in .xlsb Format

Occasionally, we must save our worksheets in the binary format (.xlsb), which implies that the worksheets are now transformed into binary format.

Saving File in .xlsb Format

Additionally, binary uses more memory than regular format, as we are all aware. A memory fault may therefore result from translating the sheet to binary.

Solution: Save the File in Normal Format

Always maintain the .xlsx file extension when saving the document. See the steps below.

📌 Steps:

  • Primarily, navigate to the File tab.

Navigating to File tab in Excel

  • Secondarily, click on the Save As option.

  • On the right side of the display, click on the drop-down icon.
  • Then, choose Excel Workbook (*.xlsx) from the available formats.
  • Lastly, click Save.

Saving file in xlsx format to prevent showing not enough memory in Excel

And, the error message in Excel which says “Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows” will not show up again.

Reason 08: Running Excel Without Administrative Rights

You can get this error if you are using MS Excel without having administrative rights.

Solution: Open the File Using Run as Administrator

To solve this issue, please follow the steps carefully.

📌 Steps:

  • Firstly, click on the Start menu. Alternatively, press the WIN key on the keyboard.
  • Then, right-click on the Excel app.
  • In the context menu, click on More.
  • Lastly, select Run as administrator.

Running Excel Without Administrative Rights

  • In the User Access Control box, click Yes.

Hopefully, you are not facing this problem anymore.

Additional Possible Solutions

The following fixes might be of use to you if the above approaches do not work, and you continue to see the error notice.

1. Repair MS Office

It’s possible that Microsoft Office has a momentary quirk or a minor fault that’s causing the issue. Use the repair feature to get rid of this problem. What you must do is as follows.

  • From Settings, choose Apps from the options.

Repair MS Office

  • After that, click on Apps & features on the next screen.

  • On the right, you can see the Microsoft 365 app. Click on it.
  • Moreover, click on Modify.

Repairing Excel to fix not enough memory issue

Later, the repair window will appear. Here, select Online Repair > Repair to start the process.

2. Change Trust Center Settings

The Trust Centre setting is probably to blame if the issue in the query arises while opening an Excel file from an email client. To fix the problem, you must modify the Trust Center. How? Read on.

  • Similarly, open the Excel Options window.
  • Then, advance to the Trust Center tab.
  • After that, click on Trust Center Settings.

Change Trust Center Settings

  • Also, jump to the Protected View tab.
  • Then, uncheck all three options and click OK.

3. Shut off Cortana

You can try shutting off Cortana to solve the issue.

  • At first, open Apps & features like before.
  • Secondly, click on Advanced options under Cortana.

Shut off Cortana

  • At this time, turn off the toggle of Cortana under the Runs at log-in section.

Then, restart your PC and check if the problem is gone.

4. Adjust Advanced Excel Options

If the issue persists, you might want to adjust Microsoft Excel’s Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE) settings. How? Read on.

  • Equivalently, open the Excel Options window.
  • After that, click on the Advanced tab.
  • Then, uncheck the box of Ignore other applications that use Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE).
  • Finally, click OK.

Adjust Advanced Excel Options

Download Practice Workbook

You may download the following Excel workbook for better understanding and practice yourself.


This article explains the “Not Enough Memory to Delete Rows” error and its possible remedies in Excel in a simple and concise manner. Don’t forget to download the practice file. Thank you for reading this article. We hope this was helpful. Please let us know in the comment section if you have any queries or suggestions.

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Shahriar Abrar Rafid
Shahriar Abrar Rafid

Shahriar Abrar Rafid, BSc, Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, Bangladesh, has worked with the ExcelDemy project for more than 1 year. He has written over 100+ articles for ExcelDemy. He is a professional visual content developer adept at crafting scripts, meticulously editing Excel files, and delivering insightful video tutorials for YouTube channels. His work and learning interests vary from Microsoft Office Suites and Excel to Data Analysis, VBA, and Video recording and... Read Full Bio

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