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Symptoms:

  • SYSTEM_IMODE_TOO_LARGE short dump in 4.6C system
  • Internal mode has exceeded the maximum size of 2GB

Solutions:

The 2GB restriction is a logical restriction due to the ABAP processor.
It is independent of the underlying operation system. We simply do not know whether the ABAP processor can handle internal modes greater than 2GB without errors and data corruption. We have therefore decided to restrict the maximum size of internal modes to 2GB in order to protect you from erroneous behaviour.

When you logon on to an R/3 system you get your own private and isolated memory area where your data is held. This is called your user context. The user context has a certain logical structure. It can consist of up to six external modes. Each external mode consists of a stack of up to nine internal modes. The internal mode is a logical concept. You can imagine it as a data capsule holding your data. Most of your data is allocated in an internal mode. The ABAP processor runs in an internal mode and operates on data in the internal mode. The only way to avoid the SYSTEM_IMODE_TOO_LARGE runtime error consists in reducing the memory consumption of the application.

All applications must be designed to work within 2GB memory. If an application runs out the memory, then either inadequate selection options have been used or the implementation of the application itself too much memory. Again, it is in the responsibility of the person developing the application to minimize memory consumption.

To therefore summarize, we would always recommend that applications are developed and designed to work within the 2GB mode. If less data can be selected to ensure the 2GB limit is not breached - then this is the best solution. However, if this is not possible and you wish to use the parameter hinted to in Note: 548845, to extend the internal mode to 4GB, it is available. Please note, however, that it *may* be risky to use it and no support is given for any issues which may arise from its use. It is not tested by us and therefore is not recommended. As stated in Note: 548845, SAP will not accept any responsibility for its use or assist with any problems which may occur from its use.

We can provide the parameter if you would like to use it. Some customer's use it to get around the problem and then deactivate it after the data has been loaded. The parameter is: abap/max_imode = four_gb.

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