How to Fix Windows Explorer Has Stopped Working Error

Windows Explorer that is also called File Explorer is a very useful feature of Windows to search files and folders. When it stops working, the situation becomes too irritating. Different reasons cause it. Here, I am going to discuss all possible reasons with their solutions to fix the error “Windows Explorer has Stopped Working.” Try them all to work around this error in your system.

Method # 1: Run System File Checker [Most Working Solution]

If there is any corrupt or missing Windows System file, Windows Explorer will show the error due to it. So, run “System File Checker to repair the damaged or corrupt file automatically.

  • Go to the “Start” and type “Command Prompt” in the Search bar. As it appears in the search results, right-click on it and select “Run as Administrator” from the contextual menu.
  • Now, type “sfc /scannow” in the Command Prompt window and press Enter.
    System File Checker Utility
  • Wait for a while until the system completes the scan of the system files. Do not close the window in haste. It will show you the results within a few minutes.
  • When it completes the scan, you need to close the window and restart the system.

Method # 2: Uninstall Recently Downloaded Program

Sometimes, you download any software from a site that is not trustworthy. It can cause corrupting Windows Explorer functioning. If you have recently installed any program, just uninstall it to get rid of this annoying situation.

  • Go to the “Control Panel” and select “Uninstall a program” under “Programs” category.
  • Here, you will see the list of programs you have downloaded. Select the recently downloaded program and click the “Uninstall” option.

That’s it. I am sure it will work well to fix the error.

Method # 3: Flush Corrupted Programs from Services

If the above-discussed method does not fix the “Windows Explorer has stopped working” error, you should flush the corrupted programs from Services. Follow the steps below to perform this action.

  • Press “Windows + R” keys together. It will open the “Run” dialogue box. Now type “msconfig” and press Enter.
    msconfig command in the Run
  • Here, click the “Services” tab and check “Hide all Microsoft Services” option. It will hide all of the necessary services.Services Tab in the System Configuration
  • Now it is easy for you to uncheck the corrupt services. Once you have done so, select “Apply” and “OK” to save your preferences.
    Services Tab menu

Method # 4: Uncheck Unwanted Programs from Startup Programs

Remove all of the useless software from the Startup programs list. These corrupt programs may be interrupting the Windows Explorer, and it is showing this error.

  • Press “Windows + R” combination of keys to launch “Run” box. Type here “msconfig” and press Enter to move ahead.
    msconfig command in the Run
  • Click the “Startup” tab to view its content. Here, you will see a few unnecessary programs with “unknown” source. Just uncheck them to remove from the list of Startup programs and click “OK” to make the modifications effective.
    Startup tab menu

Method # 5: Install Windows Updates

If you do not check for updates frequently, it can be the primary cause for showing this error. So, make sure you install Windows Updates regularly. Follow the steps below to install updates.

  • Go to the “Control Panel” and click the “System and Security” category.
    Control Panel menu
  • In the next window, you will see “Windows Update” feature. Select it to move ahead.
    Windows Update Utility
  • Now select “Check for Updates” option here. It will start checking online for updates. Now have some patience as it may take some time to check and install updates.
    Windows Update menu

Method # 6: Modify Files & Folders Settings

Occasionally, corrupt image files can also interrupt the function of Windows Explorer. So, you can get rid of this issue by changing the settings of Files and Folders.

  • Launch “Windows Explorer” and select “Organize” tab as shown in the screenshot below.
  • Here, click “Folder and search options” to move ahead.
    Organize tab menu
  • In the “Folder Options” window, click “View” tab and check “Always show icons, never thumbnails” and uncheck “Display file icon on thumbnails.” Now, select OK to save the changes.
    View Tab menu in Folder Options
  • Open the folder where you have saved your images and video files. If the error is due to a corrupt video or image file, it will again stop Windows Explorer. So, delete the corrupt files promptly.

Method # 7: Detect Error by Using Action Center

Action Center helps in identifying the corrupt application that is causing Windows Explorer stopping. Follow the steps below to perform this action.

  • Go to the “Start” and type “Action Center” in the search bar. Select “Action Center” from the search results.
    Action Center Search
  • Here, click the “Maintenance” category.
    Action Center Menu
  • Now scroll down the list and select “View reliability history” to see the history of the errors.
    Action Center setup backup menu
  • Select the option “View all problem reports” from the bottom of the window.
    Maintenance Options
  • Keep scrolling down the list until you see “Windows Explorer” with the error details. Double-click to Windows Explorer to see the particulars of the problem.
    Windows Explorer error report
  • Here, you will see the Problem Details.
    Description of the Error for Windows Explorer Now, you can fix it by copying this from its current location and pasting to another place.

Method # 8: Move the Copy of “Explorer.exe” to Somewhere Else

A quick solution for an unresponsive Windows Explorer is to copy its “.exe” file to some other place in C:/ drive.

  • Open “C:/” drive and click “Windows.”
    C Drive Menu
  • Scroll down the list to skip all the folders. Below you will see files. Search here “explorer” as shown in the image below. Right-click on it and select “Copy” option.
    Windows folder content
  • Now go to the “System32” folder in “Windows.” Right-click on an empty place and select the “Paste” option from the contextual menu to paste “explorer” file here.
    System32 folder content
  • Now restart the PC and see if it works to fix this error.

Method # 9: Run an Antimalware Software

The error may be due to malware. Maybe you have used an infected USB device or downloaded it from an online resource. You can fix it by running a trusted antimalware software. In this regard, I would recommend you “Malwarebytes” software. It is a quick and easy tool for users. You can download it from Here.

  • As it is launched, click the “Scan” option to start the scan process.
    Malwarebytes home page
  • It will detect and fix malicious malware in your system.
    malwarebytes scanning process

Method # 10: Run Antivirus Scan

Run antivirus scan to fix any deadly virus that is causing this problem. You can use any trusted antivirus tool like AVAST. As compared to many other antivirus tools, its’ downloading and installation is less time-consuming. Within a few minutes, it will be downloaded and ready to use. Click Here to download it.

  • Open your antivirus program and click the “Scan” option here.
    AVAST Smart Scan
  • It will scan the system within a few minutes to detect and fix any virus from your system.

Method # 11: Clean Registry

There may be a corrupt registry that is causing Windows Explorer error. You can edit the registry manually, but that is risky if you do not know much about registry editing. If you are an expert user of Windows, go ahead, but I would recommend here to use a third-party tool to clean corrupt registry. You can use Auslogics registry cleaner tool. Click Here to download it.
When you finish the installation process, it will automatically start.

  • It will show the “Scan” option. Click this option and wait for a while.
    Registry Cleaning tool
  • All the registry errors are detected and fixed automatically.
    Registry errors detected

Method # 12: Restart the System

Before moving ahead, you can follow this very simple trick. A reboot of the system can fix all of the temporary problems. If Windows Explorer is stuck temporarily, you can restart the system to fix it.

That’s all guys! I tried to provide you with all of the effective techniques. If all of them work well for you, just share your views in comments.


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