Windows Explorer Hangs

Have you encountered an instance where your My Computer (or in Windows 10, the default name is This PC) just hangs out of the blue? When this happens, you will not be able to use the GUI-way of navigating through your files, although you can via command prompt. If you’re going to ask me why this happens, well, honestly I do not know. There’s a myriad of reasons why a program malfunctions. In this scenario, the “explorer.exe” is the problematic program.

As the famous line in IT Crowd says, “Have you tried turning it off and on again?”


This is also applicable to programs! But not all programs, so take caution when restarting a particular program in the operating system.

You may follow below steps at your own risk on how to “repair” explorer.exe. The steps below only applies to Windows 10.

  1. Open the Task Manager.
    1. You can run taskmgr.exe via Run dialog box.
    2. You can right-click the taskbar and click Task Manager.
  2. Click the Details tab.
  3. Find the explorer.exe.
  4. Right-click and click End process tree.
  5. What happens next is you basically cannot see anything but a black screen and your cursor. So what to do now??
  6. Press Ctrl + Alt + Delete. You’ll have the options:
    1. Lock
    2. Switch User
    3. Sign Out
    4. Task Manager
  7. Click Task Manager.
  8. Click on File > Run new task.
  9. Type explorer.exe.
  10. The desktop will show again as well as the windows.
  11. Try to access My Computer or This PC (or whatever name you named it). If it’s functioning properly now, then I think it’s already “fixed”. 😀