WD: "There is not enough memory..." Opening RTF or WordMail File

ID: q137158

The information in this article applies to:


Word may return the following error message when attempting to open a Rich Text Format (RTF) file or an email message from Exchange Client using WordMail:

   There is not enough memory to complete the operation.


Word retains revisions for all open documents in memory using a global revision table. A problem currently exists in rare instances where Word writes the revision tables of more than one open document to a single document when saving as RTF. If the revision table for that document grows larger than the 64 kilobyte (KB) revision table maximum supported by the RTF reader in Word, Word cannot reopen the file.

This problem can also occur when reading e-mail messages opened from Exchange using WordMail because this transfer is also based on RTF.

This problem most commonly occurs when running Word in a network environment where a large number of documents may be open at one time.



NOTE: The following workaround addresses the problem described above, but the tradeoff is that the history of revisions made to the document is lost.

Method 1: Use a WordBasic Macro to Trim the Revision Table

The following macro trims the revision table in the RTF document.

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1. If you are using Word 6.x, on the File menu, click Open, and click to
   select the Confirm Conversions check box. In Word 7.0, on the Tools
   menu click Options, click the General tab, and click to select the 
   Confirm Conversions check box.

2. Open the affected RTF file.

3. Click Text Only in the Convert File dialog box.

4. Run the following macro to trim the revision table in the RTF document.

   Sub MAIN

   msg$ = "This macro will delete the revision history table "
   msg$ = msg$ + "from an RTF file. To do this, you must first "
   msg$ = msg$ + "Open the RTF file As Text. After the macro has "
   msg$ = msg$ + "run, just Save the file and Close. "
   msg$ = msg$ + "Click OK to run the macro."

   dothis = MsgBox(msg$, " Delete REVTBL ", 305)

   If dothis = - 1 Then
      EditFind .Find = "{\*\revtbl"
      If EditFindFound() = 0 Then
         MsgBox "No RevTbl Found"
         CharRight 1
         EditFind .Find = "}"
         CharRight 1
            mystart = GetSelStartPos()
            CharLeft 1
            EditFind .Find = "}}"
            CharLeft 1
            CharRight 1
            myend = GetSelEndPos()
            If myend - mystart < 100 Then
               MsgBox "RevTbl already trimmed"
               SetSelRange mystart, myend
               MsgBox "RevTbl successfully trimmed"

   End Sub

5. Resave the RTF file in Text Only format.

6. Reopen the RTF file as RTF.

7. Save the file in Word Document format.


Turn off WordMail and read the message in Exchange. To do this, follow these steps:

1. Start the Exchange mail client.

2. On the Compose menu, click WordMail Options.

3. Click to clear the Enable Word as a Mail Editor check box and click


4. Open the mail message in Exchange.

NOTE: Disabling WordMail as the message editor allows you to open the message because Exchange does not recognize (or write) the revision table. Exchange ignores the revision table and successfully opens the message.

To help prevent others who are using WordMail from receiving a message that has accumulated a large revision table, quit Word and Log Off from Exchange at least once a day.


Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in the Microsoft products listed at the beginning of this article. This problem was corrected in Microsoft Word 97 for Windows and Microsoft Word 98 Macintosh Edition.


The revision table in an RTF file header can be viewed by Turning on the Confirm Conversions option, open an RTF file as Text Only, and searching for the string "\revtbl" to identify the starting point of the revision table. If a revision table contains names of authors who never actually edited the document, then the above problem has occurred.

Additional query words: rich text format grows expands increases significantly increments added entire history explodes Err=1016 revtbl convert converted converts converting conversion transfer transferred transfers transferring translate translated translates translating translation wpft5 word perfect

Keywords          : kberrmsg kbinterop kbmacro kbnetwork kbmacroexample 
Version           : MACINTOSH:6.0;6.0.1,6.0.1a;WINDOWS:6.0,6.0a,6.0c,7.0,7.0a
Platform          : MACINTOSH WINDOWS
Issue type        : kbbug
Solution Type     : kbfix

Last Reviewed: November 10, 1998