Fix: File Explorer Not Responding in Windows 10

File Explorer Not Responding in Windows 10

Issues related to File Explorer in Windows 10 is quite common. One of these problems that bug users often is File Explorer Not Responding in Windows. According to users, the issues that surface usually are File Explorer not opening, then crashing, File Explorer not responding after the start. In this article, we will address the File Explorer issue that keeps it from opening in Windows 10.

Why does File Explorer keep Freezing?

It is not very clear about what could be causing File Explorer to not respond or open in Windows 10. The reasons vary according to situations. All you could do is try different solutions for various users to get rid of this issue.

How to Fix File Explorer Not Responding in Windows 10?

The best bet to fix the File Explorer issue in Windows is to try out the solutions that have worked for other users. In the following section, we are going to talk about these solutions to help you out.

As a workaround, the first thing that you should try is restarting your PC. After restarting your PC, try to launch File Explorer and see if the issue persists. If the issue is not resolved or if it is fixed, but it returns after some time, you must try out the solutions provided below:

Restart Windows Explorer Process in Task Manager

Using the Task Manager window, you can restart the Explorer process on your PC. If this process has glitched or is stuck, this method will help you get out of this situation. Here are the steps:

Step 1: Open Task Manager in Windows. For this, press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys on your keyboard together.

Step 2: The Task Manager window will open. Here, make sure and stay in the Processes tab. Here, look for the process named File Explorer. Select this process in the Task Manager window, then click on the Restart button available at the bottom right corner of the window.

This will restart the File Explorer process. Now, try to launch File Explorer on your PC and see whether it works fine this time.

Exit Explorer and Restart Manually

If the above solution wasn’t helpful, we recommend trying out this method to fix Windows 10 File Explorer not responding issue. In this process, we will be exiting File Explorer through the context menu of the Task Bar. Then, using the Task Manager, we will try to launch File Explorer manually. Let us find out how:

Step 1: Make a right-click on the Task Bar of your PC. Now, from the menu that will open, select the Exit Explorer option available at the bottom of the menu. This will close down the File Explorer process running in the background.

Step 2: Now, open the Task Manager window by pressing the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys.

Step 3: In the Task Manager window, click on the File option, then from the menu that opens, select the Run new task option.

Step 4: A Create new task window will open. Here, type explorer.exe and press the Enter key. Windows will now try to launch File Explorer in Windows now.

Did this help you fix the issue? If not, go to the next solution.

Restart Explorer in CMD

Here’s another way to restart the File Explorer process in Windows that you can try if you couldn’t fix the issue using the above solutions. Kill the Explorer process, then start it using Command Prompt. Follow the steps below:

Step 1: Press Win + X keys. A menu will open. Here, select the Command Prompt (Admin) option. When prompted by a dialogue box for permission to open CMD, press the Yes option.

Step 2: In the Command Prompt window, type the command provided below and hit Enter:

taskkill /f /im explorer.exe

Step 3: Once the explorer process is ended, type the next command provided here and press Enter:

start explorer.exe

Now, exit the Command Prompt window. After that, try to launch File Explorer. Did this help?

Run SFC Scan in Windows 10

The SFC scan is a powerful utility that can be used to fix many issues in Windows 10. This scan looks for problematic and corrupt system files in Windows, and after identifying them, it resolves them on its own.

It might be possible that the File Explorer Windows 10 not responding issue could be arising because of such problematic system files on your PC. Running the SFC scan will ensure that such files are not messing with standard Windows operations, such as the Explorer.exe process. Follow the steps that are available below:

Step 1: Launch Command Prompt in Admin Mode on your PC. To do so, press the Win + S keys. The Windows Search Panel will open. Here, type cmd. Now, go to the search results and make a right-click on the Command Prompt option. From the menu that will open, select the Run as administrator option.

Step 2: The Command Prompt window will launch. Here type SFC /scannow, then press the Enter key on the keyboard.

The SFC scan will commence now. Wait till the scan is complete. After that, exit the Command Prompt screen. Now, reboot your PC. After the reboot, launch File Explorer. If the File Explorer not responding Windows 10 issue still occurs, move on to the next solution.

By Cleaning Quick Access History

If the Quick Access History of File Explorer has accumulated or contains broken files, it may cause the Explorer to stall whenever you try to launch it. Make sure that this is not the problem anymore by cleaning its Quick Access History on your PC. Here are the steps:

Step 1: Press the Win + S key. In the Search Panel that will open, type file explorer options

Step 2: From the search results, select File Explorer Options.

Step 3: In the new window that opens, make sure to stay in the General tab. Here, go to the Privacy section and check to mark the recently used files in Quick access and Show frequently used folders in Quick access options. Now, click on the Clear button.

After making this change in the Explorer options, go ahead and launch File Explorer. If you still face the File Explorer not responding issue, go to the next solution.

Change How File Explorer Starts

Usually, the File Explorer is set to open with Quick Access options. You can change that setting in your PC and set it to open This PC. Making this change is one of the best ways to fix this issue, as reported by users. For this, you will need to reopen the File Explorer Options window.

Step 1: Follow the steps provided in the solution present right above to launch File Explorer Options on your PC.

Step 2: Once the File Explorer Options window opens, stay on the General tab. Now, open the dropdown available next to the Open File Explorer to option and select the This PC option. After making the selection, click on the Apply option, then click on Ok.

After making this change, try to open Explorer. If it doesn’t run, you can give your PC a restart first, then try to run File Explorer. Was the File Explorer not responding issue fixed?

Restore File Explorer Defaults

Another change that you can make in the File Explorer Options window to help you with this issue is restoring the File Explorer to its default settings. As you use Windows, you keep making changes in your PC according to situations. In case you made a change in the File Explorer settings that is causing it not to respond, you can try to restore it to default settings. Here are the steps:

Step 1: Open the File Explorer Options window. The steps for the same has been provided in the above solutions.

Step 2: Now, while staying in the General tab, select the Restore Defaults option. By doing so, you will change the File Explorer settings back to default as it comes with freshly installed Windows OS.

These were pretty much the solutions that you can try to fix File Explorer not responding issue in Windows 10. We hope one of the solutions helped you out with this issue.

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