When something goes wrong in Windows 10 and the system stops responding, the simplest solution for many would seem to be to reboot and go. But nevertheless, sometimes rebooting means losing files or work in the process: a document we were writing, a file we were editing, something we were downloading from the web, etc.
For this reason it is good to know some “tricks” or measures that we can take before giving everything for lost and forcing a restart. And, an exceptional and simple solution that usually gets us out of trouble when windows stop responding we can’t move mouse pointer or desktop freezes, is to restart File Explorer.
How to restart Windows 10 File Explorer
The simplest way to restart Windows Explorer is to do it from Task Manager. It is also the most infallible way, because how its creator explained it CTRL + SHIFT + ESC will launch Task Manager without any help from the Shell.
So if the Shell or Explorer is dead, you can use this key combination to start Taskmgr and restart the shell. Even if your taskbar has disappeared, this combination should work.
You can also use CTRL + ALT + DEL and then select Task Manager, but the other shortcut is more direct. Then, once you have the same window open, you have two options:
- Click on “More details”, select the tab Processes, navigate to Windows processes, to select Windows Explorer and click on Restart
If the mouse pointer is not responding you can do all this using only the keyboard: CTRL + SHIFT + ESC> ALT + A> N or Enter> explorer.exe + Enter
- If Explorer still doesn’t work, if you don’t see a taskbar, or if the process doesn’t even appear in Task Manager, you can run it manually. Just click on Archive, Then in Run new task, and finally in the pop-up window write explorer.exe and press OK.