Issue: How to fix Explorer.exe error on Windows 10?
Annoying Windows 10 freezes are driving me crazy! Folders I browse on are continuously refreshing, and that is seriously impacting my browsing quality. Is there anything I could do to fix this issue?
One of the main reasons Windows may freeze relates to Explorer.exe – a process that always runs in the background of any Windows operating system (starting from Windows 95) and is located in C:\\Windows directory. Also known as Windows Explorer, it is a Graphical Shell component that allows users to modify files located on the computer or any of the connected networks.
While the operating Windows is indeed possible without Explorer.exe, it gives users a much-needed UI that merely is much more convenient. Therefore, the process becomes one of the most useful features in the Windows operating system. Unfortunately, just as any other executables and Windows components, Windows Explorer also runs into errors, such as “The Instruction at 0x00*** referenced memory at 0x00*** The memory could not be written.”
However, possibly the most annoying explorer.exe errors are those who make the desktop hang, prevent users from accessing the Start menu or clicking on the executables within the Windows Explorer. In this article, we will try to help you fix Explorer.exe errors – so check out the solutions we provide below.
Explorer.exe errors can occur randomly, or when a particular application is launched. In other cases, users reported that they encountered problems when trying to upgrade the operating system or download Windows Updates.
While most of the Explorer.exe errors are related to the Windows system and its configuration options, users might encounter issues with the process if it was duplicated, corrupted, or replaced by malware. Threat actors often disguise the malicious processes under legitimate names just to reduce the suspicious.
In any case – if you are experiencing problems with Windows Explorer, you should fix Explorer.exe with the help of our guide below.
Fix 1. Scan your computer for malware
As previously mentioned, Explorer.exe might be hijacked by malware, meaning that it is employed to perform malicious tasks, such as stealing sensitive information, recording keystrokes, uploading other virus payloads, distributing malware, expanding a botnet network, etc.
It is indeed possible to remove Explorer.exe virus from your computer manually, but it requires altering Windows registry, which is never recommended to do, as incorrect actions might result in application/system malfunctions and even require a full Windows reinstall.
Therefore, we highly recommend using a powerful anti-malware application that can detect and delete all the malicious entries from the system. Additionally, to repair damaged Windows files and repair Registry automatically, please scan the device with .
Fix 2. Restart Windows Explorer
Restarting the problematic process might be able to help you fix Explorer.exe error. Here's how to do it:
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard
- When Task Manager opens, click on More details (if not enabled previously)
- In the Process tab, scroll down to find Windows Explorer Process
- Click on it once and then click Restart at the bottom-right of the window
Fix 3. Re-enable Windows Explorer task
In some cases, Explorer.exe crashes and users are unable to view the standard UI, such as the Start menu, taskbar, desktop icons, etc. If that is the case and you only see a black screen in front of you, you need to enable Windows Explorer as follows:
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open the Task Manager
- If the Windows Explorer entry is not under the process list, means that the explorer.exe has crashed
- To re-enable it, click on File > Run new task (you will see it right under “Task Manager” title)
- In the Create new task window, type in explorer (tick Create this task with Administrative privileges) and hit Enter or click OK
Fix 4. Fix Explorer.exe error via the Command Prompt
DISM and SFC features that are accessible via the Command Prompt can fix various Windows-related issues, including the Explorer.exe. Follow these steps:
- Type cmd into Cortana's search box
- Right click on the Command Prompt search result and pick Run as administrator
- Once the new window opens, type in the following commands, pressing Enter after each one:
dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
Be aware that these scans might run for a while (especially the DISM one), so make sure Windows completes running these tasks. Restart your PC afterward.
Fix 5. Turn off dynamic accent colors
- Right-click your desktop
- Choose Personalize
- In the new window navigate to Colors
- Turn off the Automatically pick an accent color from my background feature
Fix 6. Turn off wallpaper slideshow
- Right-click your desktop
- Choose Personalize
- Locate Background
- In the options menu, turn off the Slideshow mode by changing the background to a static picture of a single color.
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