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One for the Window's technical readers

What does the warning "There are no stack pages left ...." on a PC really mean?

What difference does the number of stack pages setting make anyway as the machine seems to continue working OK afterwards. Norton diagnostics tests do not show anything wrong with the hard drive or Windows setup.

Serious answers only on this one please.
Chris Bales


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By cbales
16th Oct 2001 19:50

Thanks Colin
Thanks for the help and lead link Colin, much appreciated.


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By neileg
16th Oct 2001 15:28

I'd worry
Whenever I get an obscure system message about memory, I assume I have a virus. My assumption has been right more often than not.

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16th Oct 2001 13:45

I know next to nothing about windows ...
and do not own a copy ; but as a programmer I can attempt to answer your question in general terms.

A stack is a commonly used data structure which stores a collection of data elements in a "last in first out" model. There are two operations that can be performed on a stack - adding an element to it and removing an element from it (commonly called push and pop). Removing an element from a stack returns the most recently added element (hence L I F O). They are useful for preserving state across some kind of nested operation e.g. nested calls between subroutines within programs - each new subroutine places its state onto the stack at entry and removes its data at exit - perfectly restoring the last stack context.

A page is the smallest unit of memory that can be addressed by an operating systems memory management subsystem (typically 2k or 4k but system dependant). So at a guess Windows reserves a certain amount of memory pages to be used as stack space by whatever is misbehaving here and they are all full. It sounds like it is scratch memory for some kind of specialised subsystem as the OS does not die and indeed - Microsoft pin the blame on device drivers here

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