AW: [R] Out of memory

Nikolaus Hansen Nikolaus.Hansen at
Mon Aug 19 14:38:15 CEST 2002

> "Liaw, Andy" wrote:
> > 
> > I have run into similar problems occasionally on Windoze 
> NT.  For whatever
> > reason, R refuses to do anything, including q("no").  
> So you got a prompt and were able to type it in? Strange! Never seen
> something like that! 
> > The only way out was
> > to kill it via Task Manager.  Not sure how to make it reproducible.
> > Unfortunately Uwe's comments are not exactly helpful, 
> though mostly true.
> a) What was wrong?

OK, the memory.limit(...) command was unreasonable as your comment pointed out. The version hint may also prove helpful. 

But you did not comment all the reasonable commands I typed in (Andy added on another one) without getting a reasonable response from R. Why not? Thus it seemed to me that you would expect and accept that kind of behaviour of R: E.g. loading some data into memory which exceed the recent memory size will result in refusing any further command (more precise: getting a prompt and an invariable response to any typed command). This is not exactly helpful...

> b) They were helpful, since, obviously, the usage of 
> memory.limit() was
> not reasonable.
> c) Some more un-helpful comments on memory usage:
> One of my collegeaus asked me how to compute all possible permutations
> of the integers 1, 2, ..., 20 and save them to a file. Well, 
> I told him,
> in principle he could use ... But he should think about the memory
> usage, since these are 20! permutations * 20 integers to store. If he
> could use just one byte per integer, approx. 50000000000 
> GigaByte would
> be required. ;-)

Maybe helpful for him. Even though not exactly the focus of my contribution. 

> Best,
> Uwe

Nikolaus Hansen
r-help mailing list -- Read
Send "info", "help", or "[un]subscribe"
(in the "body", not the subject !)  To: r-help-request at

More information about the R-help mailing list