Fixing the Memory Full Issue on Nokia E71

As many of you already know, I make my living as a freelance writer. A good proportion of the work that I do is related to reporting on the world of technology and reviewing an assortment of gadgets. That’s why it’s even more frustrating when one of my first important pieces of daily technology starts acting up on me, but that’s exactly what has been going on for the last little while.

My primary phone at the moment is the Nokia E71 that I bought last year. By and large, I’ve been pleased with my purchase and the phone has been great for productivity, social networking, GPS navigation, and all that great stuff. However, I’ve recently been encountering some memory issues and it culminated to a unfortunate error last night.

Frozen Applications and Forced Restarts

For the past while, I’ve noticed that some applications would “freeze” upon occasion and I couldn’t figure out why. I thought it could have been a RAM issue, but more often than not, the “frozen” application would be the only one running. Everything would return to normal with a quick restart of the phone. This is annoying, to be sure, but I was able to “fix” it without too much trouble.

Last night, however, it got worse. When I tried to reply to a friend who had sent me a text message, I got a “memory full” error. It told me to close some applications and try again, but no other applications were open. After exiting the messaging app, I couldn’t even get back into my text message “inbox” again. The same “memory full” error screen appeared. Checking the phone’s memory, I still had a decent amount remaining. That didn’t appear to the problem.

After scouring the web, I came across other users who encountered similar problems. Some suggested firmware updates, but others said that new firmware was just as problematic. Some suggested uninstalling some (buggy) applications, but I know that couldn’t be my problem. And then someone suggested something that sounded like it might work for me: adjust your messaging settings.

How to Fix the “Memory Full” Problem

Go into the main menu of the Messaging application. This is the screen where you can see New Message, Inbox, My Folders, and so on. Press the Options button, choose Settings, and then select Other. Change the “Number of saved messages” to 999 and change the “Memory in use” to your microSD memory card. You should then be able to return to the text message inbox again after this. From here, you should probably clear out both your inbox and sent messages folders periodically.

As far as I can tell, this seems to have fixed the problem. This is with my Nokia E71 (more specifically, the E71-2 NAM), but it should be fundamentally the same for many S60 smartphones. With some of the hardware upgrades in newer devices like the Nokia N97 mini smartphone, I’m probably less likely to encounter problems like this.

Time for a New Phone?

Then again, I can already hear some of you telling me to get an iPhone or Android phone instead. Perhaps. Maybe the next time I choose to upgrade.