FIX: File Explorer Crashes on The Right Click

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
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file explorer crashes right click

What to do it File Explorer crashes on the right click

  1. Perform A Clean Boot
  2. Use ShellExView to Manage Context Menu Handlers
  3. Run SFC
  4. Additional solutions

Some users are facing a problem with their File Explorer. Apparently, their File Explorer crashes when they click on the right mouse click. This problem could be caused by a bad context menu handler.

In case you didn’t know, a context menu handler is a shell extension handler whose job is to add comments to an existing context menu, like for example: cut, paste, print, etc.
Windows Explorer Crashes On The Right click wind8apps

File Explorer crashes when right click

Solution #1 – Perform A Clean Boot

Clean Boot could be a solution for many problems, and it may fix ours as well. Clean Boot starts Windows with a minimal amount of drivers and software, in order to determine if some software conflict with each other, or prevent them from working. Before you perform a Clean Boot, you need to login to your computer as an administrator

Here’s how you’ll perform a Clean Boot:

  • Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Search. Or, if you are using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, and then click Search.
  • Type msconfig in the search box, and then tap or click msconfig.
  • On the Services tab of the System Configuration dialog box, tap or click to select the Hide all Microsoft services check box, and then tap or click Disable all.hide all microsoft services
  • On the Startup tab of the System Configuration dialog box, tap or click Open Task Manager.
  • On the Startup tab in Task Manager, for each startup item, select the item and then click Disable.disable startup programs
  • Close Task Manager.
  • On the Startup tab of the System Configuration dialog box, tap or click OK, and then restart the computer.

Be aware that your computer may lose some functionality after you perform a Clean Boot. But, right after you start your PC normally, the functionality will return, so there’s no need to worry about that. Also, you should be very careful when you’re performing a Clean Boot, because if you make certain errors, your computer could become unusable.

Solution #2 – Use ShellExView to Manage Context Menu Handlers

If a Clean Boot didn’t help, than your problem is definitely caused by a bad context menu handler. And below, you’ll find the best and fastest way to handle your bad context menu handlers.

You’ll need to install one third-party software in order to solve your problems with band context menu handlers. I’m not a fan of installing third-party software in order to solve certain system problems, but everyone around Microsoft’s forums recommends this software, so I guess it really does the job.

ShellExView is a great tool to view and mange all installed shell extensions. If available, the software displays the description, as well as version details, company information, location, file name and more. You can also manually disable or enable any item, so you can choose which extension you want to run, and which you don’t.

After you download and run ShellExView, it will perform a complete scan of the registry in order to find all available shell extensions. After the scan is done, you need to spot the context menu handlers. Use “Type” to sort all the context menu handlers together.

Now, all you need to do is to disable non-Microsoft context menu handlers one-by-one, so disable one non-Micorosft context menu handler, and if the problem is still present, re-enable it and disable another menu handler, and so on. To see which context menu handler isn’t Microsoft’s, just look for the information under the Company Name column in ShelExView.

Solution #3 – Run SFC

If the issue persists after following these two solutions, you can also run SFC. This is a built-in tool that scans your system files and fixes corrupted or missing ones. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Launch Command Prompt from the Start menu > type sfc /scannowsfc scannow
  2. Hit Enter for the scan to start
  3. Wait for the scan to complete. Try to open File Explorer again to see if this solved the problem.

Additional solutions

For more methods to fix File Explorer crashes, you can check out this troubleshooting guide.


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in December 2014 and has been since updated for freshness, and accuracy.

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