I have 2 Windows XP boxen: A (running XP SP3) and B (running XP SP2). I'm using Remote Desktop to connect from A to B.

When I connect, I get the login screen (which is slow to respond to keyboard/mouse input), and after logging in, I get the following:

Fatal Error (Error Code: 5)

Your Remote Desktop session is about to end.

This computer might be low on virtual memory.  
Close your other programs, and then try connecting to the remote computer again.  
If the problem continues, contact your network administrator or technical support.

I've seen one way to (sometimes) get in by opening a second RDP session to the same box [1], and if I wait long enough sometimes it will go ahead and log in anyway.

Is there something broken/missing on the PC I'm trying to remote in to?

Edited in reply to djangofan:

There's nobody listed under "Lock pages in memory".

When the double login trick works, a glance at Task Manager shows plenty of free memory, >800MB available out of 1.5 GB. (Performance tab, Physical memory)

For what it's worth, this happens consistently after a reboot.

What sort of exact info would be useful? There's very little remaining installed on that machine that's not Windows + Office...

[1] found at http://www.fdcservers.net/vbulletin/archive/index.php/t-1580.html


I've seen this problem before, for me it was caused by a failing HDD. The virtual memory was set to a fixed size and part of the file was on some bad blocks. I temporarily corrected this by setting the virtual memory to system managed, running a scandisk, then a defrag, and then setting it back to a fixed size. After I got the system stable I imaged and replaced the failing drive about a week or so later. Since then its been running great, about 18 months.


Well, if the low memory isn't obvious the only thing I can think of is to make sure that in the Security Policy settings that you haven't disallowed your login from using Virtual memory. In the "User Rights Assignment" make sure your user isn't listed under "Lock pages in memory". Otherwise, i'd say you really are low on memory and you should fix it or provide more detail on the EXACT configuration of the pc that you are talking about...


Looks like a memory leak to me. Are you running any applications know to cause leaks (firefox, etc)?


Are both up-to-date on their installed version of RDP?

There was a change going from 5->6 that made connecting to older editions harder if certain security policies are not eased.

Also, is virtual memory set to a fixed size, or is it system-managed?


  • Both have version 6.0.6001.18000, with system-managed virtual memory. – BryCoBat Apr 15 '10 at 13:20

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