Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm experiencing this one more recently. An example of this (which happened now). This doesn't come at the start or end of a program. But, while I'm working on it. I was just watching a video, when this one popped out suddenly. I accidentally pressed the "OK" button (which caused my dial-up to get disconnected). But, thats not important now.

Another example, I got the same error while saving a game (with the game's executive file). And so, I have to terminate it. If it isn't an error, well - then, Is it a VIRUS?

"Sadly, My antivirus doesn't detect any..." And, this has been a serious problem for me (as its appearing frequently). I get this one on some unlucky days. But, not every time I run the program.


Well, I thought the issue will be as Josh answered. I have a thought that it is actually a virus. Now, it has wide-spread over my computer. When I click several EXE's it must say Application. But, it indicates them as "%1" %*. Most of my exe files return the same error-message if I try to access them. And, a process named ntvdm.exe runs every time with the help of another process named F.exe. When I end the process, it loops again. I think, all these are related issues. The problem is, my AVG now detects itself as a virus. So, I uninstalled it in order to prevent it from deleting files.

What do I do now? (other than formatting?)

share|improve this question
up vote 2 down vote accepted

No, it's not a virus. The error simply means that an application tried to reference data from a memory address which either does not exist, does not contain data, is set as off limits by the Operating System, or is occupied by another application reference. This is known as an access exception error.

  1. If your computer is old and or you have installed a lot of programs which may be running in the background at startup, then that could explain all the memory exceptions. 50 background services all scrambling for memory to stay alive. Poor buggers.

  2. If the computer is 5+ years old, your RAM could be failing.

  3. If you have less than 2 gigs of RAM, you may need more.

share|improve this answer
4. The program is poorly written, maybe old and you should update it. – Baarn Dec 30 '12 at 11:27
Hi Josh. Thanks for your answer. Well, My computer is new. As it isn't a virus, I need not worry about it. But, I've been noticing this only frequently (it wasn't there for the first 4 months). Now, Most executive files are crash-reporting this error message. referenced 0x0000... which made me suspect that its a virus. What do you think of this? – Waffle's Crazy Peanut Dec 30 '12 at 11:46
It's not a virus. In fact, it's actually the opposite. The memory access exception is being caused by a windows security feature called Data Execution Prevention(DEP). In simplest form, DEP prevents applications and or web services from accessing certain memory addresses reserved by default for the Operating System. Most new applications are designed to work with DEP, but as Informaficker stated above, older software may still try access that memory. To Disable DEP:Go to Start Menu > Control Panel > System > Advance > Performance Settings > Data Execution Prevention. – Josh Campbell Dec 30 '12 at 13:22
Hi Josh. Please ping me by using the @. Or else, I can't recognize your comment. Thank you BTW. Just required a clarfication from a professional :-) – Waffle's Crazy Peanut Dec 30 '12 at 14:15
@CrazyBuddy No problem. I actually encountered the same issue a month back. I just disabled DEP and all is well. BTW, I hope I did the ping correctly :) – Josh Campbell Dec 30 '12 at 14:23

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.