An application I wrote crashed, and because it was controlling a hidden Chrome window I went in to task manager and killed all the 'Chrome' tasks and a few with 'Background' in the task name that seemed relevant.

The computer still wasn't working properly so I reset it. Now whenever I start any software the computer thinks about it for a couple of seconds and then nothing. The application is shown in task manager as a 'Background Process' but I can't tab to it or interact with it.

The applications so far affected are:

  • Chrome
  • Visual Studio
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Excel
  • Firefox
  • Notepad++

The applications I can open normally are:

  • Calculator
  • Snipping tool
  • Camera

Microsoft Edge works, but barely. It won't launch secondary widows to deal with things like the 'Log in with Google' button on stackexchange.

I'm at a loss as to how else to describe the situation, but perhaps the attached task manager screenshot helps! https://i.stack.imgur.com/V136f.jpg

1 Answer 1


I have no explanation for the problem, but according to your description I can say that something is very wrong, so strong measures are required.

I would counsel the following measures, in ascending order of severity :

Ensure before starting that you have very good backups.

  • I ran chkdsk C: and then had to shut down the computer. Having left the laptop shutting down for 30 minutes, the battery died... When it booted again, everything seemed to be fine. I've since reset it a few times to check, and it's working fine. No idea what broke, or what fixed it!
    – Martin KS
    Sep 19, 2018 at 8:25
  • chkdsk might have had an effect - just by accessing the disk, Windows might have detected and corrected some minor problem. I suppose we will never know what it was.
    – harrymc
    Sep 19, 2018 at 8:36

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