How to Fix File Explorer Crashes and Freezes on Windows 10?

by Ugnius Kiguolis - -


Issue: How to Fix File Explorer Crashes and Freezes on Windows 10?

My PC is running Windows 10 for a couple of months now, and I have zero complaints up until now. It seems that I did not perform any system changes, except installed a couple of crucial apps. However, for some reason, whenever I try to rename a folder or add a new one, File Explorer freezes as soon as I click a key on a keyboard. While it’s not the worst error, I have ever encountered, having an endless number of New Folder makes me feel frustrated. I would appreciate any help!

Solved Answer

File Explorer, formerly known as Windows Explorer, is a core file of the Windows operating system. While it has been so from the beginning of the Windows OS, it’s been revised gradually and massively improved in Windows 10 operating system.

Fundamentally, File Explorer is not an essential component of Windows and the operating system would be able to run without it. However, the graphical user interface makes the accesses to data and operation of other functions much more comfortable. Therefore, when it malfunctions and File Explorer crashes[1] and freezes, users might have a hard time using their PCs.

Unfortunately, but people encounter issues related to File Explorer on Windows 10. For example, when users right-click on the desktop, the PC goes idle, and the Contextual Menu shows up just after 10 -15 seconds.

Also, Windows 10 users frequently experience File Explorer’s freezes, crashes, lags, and similar issues. Inability to rename folders is also counted as one of the File Explorer malfunctions. Upon thorough investigations, it turned out that a variety of reasons might be causing File Explorer crashes and freezes, such as faulty Registry,[2] corrupted system files, faulty software, etc.

Fix File Explorer crashes

According to users’ reports, WinRAR files often appears to be the core of these bugs. Unfortunately, this issue does not seem to be among the most common ones, what may be the reason why Microsoft hasn’t yet released any patches. Nevertheless, here are several tips that might help you to fix File Explorer crashes.

Fix 1. Clear File Explorer history

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  • Enter File Explorer Options into Cortana's search bar and press Enter.
  • In the General tab, click Clear under the Clear File Explorer history.
  • Click OK and see if it helped you fix crashing and freezing Windows Explorer.Clear File Explorer history

Fix 2. Uninstall faulty software

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In some cases, buggy or incorrectly installed software can result in File explorer freezing and crashing. Therefore, you should perform the following steps:

  • Type in View All into Cortana's search box and hit Enter.
  • In the Problem Report Window, find anything that is connected to Windows Explorer.
  • Right-click on the error and select View technical details.Uninstall buggy software
  • From there, you will be able to determine which application is making File Explorer to crash.
  • Uninstall the compromised program and reinstall it.

Fix 3. Reset network adapter via Command Prompt

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  • Type Command Prompt or cmd into the search box.
  • Right-click on the search results and select Run as administrator.
  • When Command Prompt window opens type in the following:

    netsh winsock reset

  • Press Enter.
  • You should see Winsock reset completed successfully message.Run Winstock reset
  • Close down Command Prompt and reboot your PC.

Fix 5. Run System File Checker

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System File Checker[3] is a convenient tool that can automatically detect and provide a crashing and freezing File Explorer fix. In some cases, running this scanner multiple times is necessary:

  • Open Command Prompt with admin privileges.
  • Type in sfc /scannow and press Enter.
  • Wait till Windows performs the scan fully.

Fix 6. Backup and then delete your graphics card registry keys

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

Note: modifying Windows Registry might be dangerous, as it can result in system malfunctions. Thus, perform these Registry changes at your own risk. To avoid the risk, we recommend scanning the machine with Reimage – it will take care of various Windows problems automatically, including Windows Registry fix.

  • Click Win key + R, type regedit in the run dialogue box, and press Enter.
  • When the Registry Editor opens, navigate to the HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\\Directory\\background\\shellex\\ContextMenuHandlers location using the left pane.Nvidia registry keys
  • Click on the drop-down arrow and find NVidia or another graphics driver that is running on your system (for Nvidia, it is the folder called NvCplDesktopContext).
  • After that, click File/Export to create backup of your registry.
  • Once the file is created, go back to the NVidia folder and delete it.
  • Then, close Registry Editor and reboot your PC.Backup and delete

Fix 7. Fix  Windows 10 File Explorer crashes and freezes by modifying Windows Registry

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.
  • Open Windows Registry Editor again.
  • Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\\Software\\Classes\\Local Settings\\Software\\Microsoft\\Windows\\Shell.
  • Right-click on BagMRU key and pick Delete.Delete Shell keys
  • Confirm by clicking Yes.
  • Now repeat the process for Bags key.

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Prevent websites, ISP, and other parties from tracking you

Private Internet Access is a VPN that can prevent your Internet Service Provider, the government, and third-parties from tracking your online and allow you to stay completely anonymous. The software provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, ensuring optimal performance and not slowing you down. You can also bypass geo-restrictions and view such services as Netflix, BBC, Disney+, and other popular streaming services without limitations, regardless of where you are.

A VPN is also crucial when it comes to user privacy. Online trackers such as cookies can not only be used by social media platforms and other websites but also your Internet Service Provider and the government. Even if you apply the most secure settings via your web browser, you can still be tracked via apps that you are connected to the internet. Besides, privacy-focused browsers like Tor is are not an optimal choice due to diminished connection speed.

Therefore, to stay completely anonymous and prevent the ISP and the government from spying on you, you should employ Private Internet Access VPN. It will allow you to connect to the internet while being completely anonymous, prevent trackers, ads, as well as malicious content. Most importantly, you will prevent the illegal surveillance activities that NSA and other governmental institutions are performing behind your back.


Recover your lost files quickly

Unforeseen circumstances can happen at any time while using the computer: it can turn off due to a power cut, a Blue Screen of Death (BSoD) can occur, or random Windows updates can decide to reboot the machine when you went away for a few minutes. As a result, your schoolwork, important documents, and other data might be lost.

Additionally, you might also be attacked by malware that can corrupt your Windows or encrypt files with a robust encryption algorithm, and ask for a ransom in Bitcoin for the decryption tool. Cybercriminals might not deliver what they promised, however, so it is better to attempt alternative file recovery methods that could help you to retrieve at least some portion of the lost data.

Data recovery software is one of the options that could help you recover your files. Once you delete a file, it does not vanish into thin air – it remains on your system as long as no new data is written on top of it. Data Recovery Pro is recovery software that searchers for working copies of deleted files within your hard drive. By using the tool, you can prevent loss of valuable documents, school work, personal pictures, and other crucial files.

About the author

Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The problem solver

Ugnius Kiguolis is the founder and editor-in-chief of UGetFix. He is a professional security specialist and malware analyst who has been working in IT industry for over 20 years.

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