2006-02-26

"Insufficient System Resources Exist to Complete the API"

[Microsoft has made the fix for this problem generally available. More info here...]

My primary system is a laptop. My schedule typically doesn't offer the ability to have long "computing" sessions. Rather, I get 10 minutes here, 15 minutes there, etc. As such, I find hibernation to be indispensable. Open the lid, hit the button, and in under a minute, I'm back to where I last left off. After upgrading from 512 MB RAM to 1280 MB, I started having problems hibernating - I would close the lid on the laptop and if I walked by it several minutes later the power light would be slowly fading on and off, indicating that the computer was in "standby" rather than hibernating. Resuming the system would yield a black exclamation point inside of a yellow triangle in the Systray, with a bubble stating "Insufficient resources exist to complete the API."

Of course, this was less than useful. What API? What type of system resources? One could surmise the API to be PowrProf's SetSuspendState, but what about the resources? Process Explorer didn't show any process to be using anything more than one would expect it to (no NP pool hogs, no apparent handle leaks, etc). After this happened, "hibernate" would not be available as a "shut down" option. Only after rebooting would the option to hibernate become available again. And hibernate would work for a few days after a reboot. But then the little yellow triangle would pop up, and I'd have to reboot to get the hibernation function working again.

I finally got frustrated enough by this to start looking around on the Internet for people with similar problems. I ran into two discussions (here and here) about the problem, and the scenarios described often had several similarities to my scenario. Among them:

  • dealing with a "large" quantity of RAM (>512 MB)
  • using "large"/hoggish programs (Outlook, VMWare, Visual Studio .NET, etc)

After weeding deep enough through the discussions, I found a link to a Microsoft Knowledge Base article - "The computer occasionally does not hibernate and you receive an "Insufficient System Resources Exist to Complete the API" error message in Windows XP with Service Pack 2, in Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2005, or in Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005".

The article exactly described my problem, and indicates the presence of a hotfix. The downside:
A supported hotfix is now available from Microsoft, but it is only intended to correct the problem that is described in this article. Only apply it to systems that are experiencing this specific problem. This hotfix may receive additional testing. Therefore, if you are not severely affected by this problem, we recommend that you wait for the next Windows XP service pack that contains this hotfix.

To resolve this problem immediately, contact Microsoft Product Support Services to obtain the hotfix.


Of course, I'm severely affected by this problem. The batteries drain faster when the computer doesn't hibernate. Many people have stuffed their computer into bags / cases, thinking that they were hibernating. Imagine their surprise to find the system ready to cook eggs when they take the computer out of the bag, because the system was on (in "standby"), enclosed in a padded, tight case.

So, it looks like I'll have to try to get the patch from MS PSS. We'll see what happens...

12 comments:

Rolland Smith said...

Whatever happened with this? Did the hotfix resolve your issue and did it break your Windows OS install?

Rolland Smith said...

FYI - I found another link related to this and it looks like it is more up to date than the one you posted further up with the hotfix. This looks like a more reviewed hotfix.
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/330909/en-us

«/\/\Ø|ö±ò\/»®© said...

>>Whatever happened with this? Did the hotfix resolve your issue and did it break your Windows OS install?<<

Actually, it was quite painless. The update mentioned in MS KB article 909095 installed painlessly and since installing, the "Insufficient System Resources Exist to Complete the API" error has not cropped up.

«/\/\Ø|ö±ò\/»®© said...

>>looks like it is more up to date than the one you posted further up with the hotfix. This looks like a more reviewed hotfix<<

I'm not so sure on that. While the KB article you mentioned was updated on 2006-04-03 (and is at revision 10.0??? Why doesn't MS put a revision history in their KB articles like they do with their security bulletins?? A rant for another day, I suppose...), the files referenced are way pre-XP SP2. I suspect the fix in the article you reference is for XP SP1. The "Applies To" section doesn't mention SP2, either.

The article I referenced (909095) lists files that are post XP SP2, and the "Applies To" section indicates:
Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2, when used with:
   Microsoft Windows XP Professional
   Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition



I'd recommend going for the 909095 fix if you're having the problem and can get Microsoft to send you a link to the patch.

Rolland Smith said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Rolland Smith said...

Thanks a lot. Listen, for the stupid reasons between MS and HP agreements apparently MS will not support my OS and magically enough HP cannot get the proper patch from MS and in essence they told me I was f*@#($. So it would be wonderful if you could get me that patch that 909095 says to call MS for. How you want to to this? I could post my email on here, but I'd rather not. I'll check this in a couple days.

«/\/\Ø|ö±ò\/»®© said...

Hmmm... You've got an HP OEM copy of XP, it would seem. Support has to come from the OEM in this case.

Some instructions for how to obtain the patch are at http://www.ntwizards.net/2004/10/13/hibernate, and there are instructions for finding a download of the patch at http://translocator.ws/2005/11/06/hibernation-insufficient-system-resources

More instructions for how to obtain the patch can be found at:
http://groups.google.com/groups/search?q=909095+800

All sets of instructions for obtaining the download are similar - keep things simple, just ask for the hotfix mentioned in MS KB 909095, etc.

I don't know what the redistribution policy on these types of patches is, but since MS isn't making them publicly available I must assume and respect that they want to maintain as much control of the distribution as possible. The typical reason for not providing direct downloads to the patches is of course that "This hotfix may receive additional testing. Therefore, if you are not severely affected by this problem, we recommend that you wait for the next Windows XP service pack that contains this hotfix."

Sorry I can't be of more assistance...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this post.
I encounterd this problem with my new Vaio laptop (2.0 gigs of Mem) and was sure it was because of lack of space in my windows partition...this post did my day!!

Anonymous said...

These posts were very helpful and solved my problem after a 1 GB to 2 GB Memory upgrade. MS has the download accessible from the KB now! Thx alot!

«/\/\Ø|ö±ò\/»®© said...

Glad to hear it helped, anonymous!

For those who may not have seen it, I mentioned the direct availability of the hotfix in "Hibernation Fix is now available from Microsoft", also linked to at the top of this page.

Matt said...

I just came across this via google because I was having the same issue. I did a search for "insufficient system resources to start the api" and this like was the second one on the page. Thank you for doing the research and posting your results.

Robert said...

I'm having this problem on my desktop. When I boot up, it shows this bubble on the Windows screen. When I click OK, it restarts and brings that bubble up on the Windows screen again, result in a viscious cycle. Is there any was this fix would help with that?