I am experiencing this since long time.
Once I have to move a FC to an SDE Database:
1) if I export the FC usually takes ages, (even with FC with 20 points) sometimes I cannot even see the geoprocessing finishing.
2) if I copy the FC to the SDE, sometimes works, sometimes, like right now, the process causes a crash.
Then, if I cancell the process ArcMap takes even more time to be available again.
I am not talking about big datasets, a simple layer with 20/30 points.
Looking at the task manager the memory used at the moment is 90%.
It might be a memory shorteness?
If not, where should I look?