Applies to: SQL Server


Attribute Value
Product Name SQL Server
Event ID 8645
Component SQLEngine
Message Text A timeout occurred while waiting for memory resources to execute the query in resource pool '%ls' (%ld). Rerun the query.


This error is raised if a SQL Server request has waited for query execution (QE) memory for an extended period of time and memory wasn't available. Query execution memory is primarily used for sort operations, hash operations, bulk copy operations and index creation and population. A query that performs one of these operations requests a memory grant. If no memory is available, the query is set to wait on a RESOURCE_SEMAPHORE until memory becomes available. If the memory isn't available after over 20 minutes of waiting, then SQL Server terminates the query with error 8645 "A timeout occurred while waiting for memory resources to execute the query in the resource pool 'default'. The timeout value varies slightly between versions of SQL Server. You may see the timeout value set at the server level by looking at timeout_sec in sys.dm_exec_query_memory_grants.


This error can be seen in relation to memory grants and prolonged waits for that memory to become available. Typically when a query completes it releases the execution memory it uses. Therefore if you see this error it means that the timed out query has waited for some other requests for over 20 minutes to complete their work. There could be just one single request that consumed all the QE memory available or there could be many requests and together their memory grants have exhausted the QE memory. If you have such long running requests in your workload, you must take measures to improve their execution duration and decrease the amount of QE memory they use.

User action

If you aren't using Resource Governor to limit the pool of memory for certain workloads, you can verify the overall server state and workload. If you're using Resource Governor check the resource pool or workload group settings.

A detailed explanation and troubleshooting steps is covered in Troubleshoot slow performance or low memory issues caused by memory grants in SQL Server.

The following list summarizes the steps detailed in the aforementioned article. These steps can help in reducing or eliminating QE memory errors:

  1. Identify which requests in SQL Server are the large memory grant or QE memory consumers. For more information, see How to identify waits for query execution memory.

  2. Rewrite queries to minimize or avoid sort and hash operations.

  3. Update statistics and keep them updated regularly to ensure SQL Server estimates memory grant correctly.

  4. Create appropriate indexes for the query or queries identified. Indexes may reduce the large number of rows processed, thus changing the JOIN algorithms and reducing the size of grants or completely eliminating them.

  5. Use the OPTION (min_grant_percent = XX, max_grant_percent = XX) hint in your queries where possible.

  6. Use Resource Governor to limit the effect of QE memory usage only to a certain workload.

  7. SQL Server 2017 and 2019 use adaptive query processing, allowing the memory grant feedback mechanism to adjust memory grant size dynamically at runtime. This feature may prevent memory grant issues in the first place.

  8. Increase SQL Server memory or adjust existing settings.

    1. Check the following SQL Server memory configuration parameters:

      • max server memory - increase if needed
      • min server memory
      • min memory per query
    2. Notice unusual settings. Correct them as necessary. Account for increased memory requirements for SQL Server. Default and recommended settings are listed in Server memory configuration options.

  9. Increase memory at the OS level (physical or virtual RAM).

  10. Verify whether other applications or services are consuming memory on this server. Reconfigure less critical applications or services to consume less memory or move them to a separate server. This action can remove external memory pressure.

  11. Run the following DBCC commands to free several SQL Server memory caches - a temporary measure.