I noticed that whenever I click on any folder in Windows Explorer (and many times on files), there will be a noticeable lag. I discovered that the cause of this turned out to be Google Drive and that disabling context menu options using apps like ShellExView or manually editing registry settings would solve the slow/hanging problem.

However: What if I sometimes want to still use the Google Drive context menu options in case I want to share a link to a folder? It's annoying to be forced to have to either completely disable this useful feature or deal with the right-click menu being constantly slow all time.

The problem (before/after exiting Google Drive):

slow context menu fast context menu

So, the question is: How can I get the best of both worlds? That is: Faster right-click while also being able to occasionally access Google Drive's useful share features?

  • I didn't realize Goole Drive slows my right-click context menu until I see this question. Now, I have it disabled by setting the registry: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Google\Drive\ContextMenuDisabled = 1. But it somehow reset every time Google Drive starts.
    – aff
    May 14, 2021 at 7:16
  • 1
    @aff Originally I came from the approach that I wanted the context menu sometimes, however, you can still disable the right click / context menu entirely if you want. However, unfortunately that also removes the status icons as well (but you will get a noticeable performance boost from that though). To do this: Click system tray icon -> Click "Kabob" menu (three dots) -> then select "Preferences..." -> "Settings..." and uncheck "Show file sync status icons and right click menu" May 21, 2021 at 0:34

2 Answers 2


I've created a solution that allows you to get the both of best worlds:

  1. Speed up right click menu by disabling Google Drive options from the context menu, but...
  2. Still allows you to access them when holding down the shift key. This is also typically known as the "extended" right-click context menu.

Normally this isn't necessary and can configured to work this way by just adding an Extended registry key. However, since Google Drive (a.k.a. Backup & Sync) utilizes the ContextMenuHandlers registry key (see below) it cannot be hidden without doing it permanently or using a hack/workaround like this one.

I write an AutoHotkey script to workaround this problem with pretty good results. Notice how the first click is very fast, but the second one is much slower (the main problem) but still at least allows access to the Google Drive context options. I've posted the code here along with detailed instructions on how to set it up:

Script: https://github.com/patricknelson/google-drive-context-fix

demo of fix

How it works:

Basically, this is a hack. It just bludgeons the registry keys necessary for showing these context menus depending on if you're A.) In Windows Explorer at the time and B.) currently pressing the shift key or not. It's not pretty, but it allows you to access the context options when you want to without having them enabled all of the time.

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers\DriveFS 28 or later
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers\DriveFS 28 or later
  • 4
    Its very appalling that google still has not fixed this issue after so many years (it being 2020 now, and I've seen reports of this going back to 2017). Its the one thing that made me immediately uninstall google drive. However after reading your solution to get rid of it, I may once again install it. Jun 6, 2020 at 14:44

A better option is to install Backup and Sync with Sandboxie and isolate it from everything else. Check the app Sandboxie.

Once the box is created. You should set the following settings on the box (use your own folder path).

screenshot of settings

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