Windows Explorer Crashing

10:25 AM May-23-14

Last few weeks I had developed a problem with the Windows Explorer crashing. Searching online didn't garner to many results that appealed to me. I had already restored my system from a image backup but surprisingly it did not fix this problem. The surprise here is that I didn't have this problem when I made this system image.

One thing repeated over and over online was about disabling shell extensions - like when I right clicked on a file, in the menu that popped up I had numerous options put there by third party programs. I could of zipped them up, scanned with my antivirus. If it was a picture I could see a thumbnail view of it, or a movie file, I could just right click on it and chose the option to convert it.

So when you right-click on a file or folder you have numerous options to perform on that file, these are shell extensions. Some of these options are there by Microsoft and some by third party programs. It was recommended to disable these other than the Microsoft ones.

One program recommended was ShellExView - www.nirsoft.net/utils/shexview.html

I already had this downloaded on my computer so I decided to open it up and give it a try. I had two choices, I could disable one at a time and then wait awhile and see if it solves the problem or just disable them all. I decided just to disable them all. So I opened the program highlighted all the non-Microsoft ones (hold down on the Ctrl key to select more that one at a time) and then just right click on one and click on Disable selected items.

It's been three days now and my explorer that was crashing at least twice a day hasn't crashed since.

I decided to restart the computer even when it wasn't necessary and then my screen went black. Just for a few seconds then came back again. I went to the Control Panel the Administrative Tools the Event Viewer. Then expand the Windows Logs and click on Application. It might take a few minutes to get ready. I searched for the ones with the red Error mark on click on it.

I found one that indicated my video driver had crashed dated at the same time my screen went blank. So i decide to take an extreme measure and uninstall my video drive and reinstall it.

I used this same Event Viewer to try to isolate the shell issue but the event viewer seemed to point to different files at fault every time. That's why I got rid of them all.

If this doesn't clear up my issues I'll have to do a repair install or re-install Windows from scratch. A story for another time.