When I call a windows explorer from an app (open/save file), as soon as it closes (whenever clicking cancel or actually saving/opening a file), the app will freeze for 3-15 seconds. Nothing particular showing up in the performance montor*, I don't know where this is coming from.

*Said freezing application takes 0% of CPU/Disk but has status "not answering"

While this is not a verious serious problem, it becomes very very irritating when I'm coding and saving new files every few minutes.

It happens on a lot of different software (Sublime Text, thunderbird, firefox, etc.) and the common factor really is the "save as" commands that call a browser. It doesn't happen at all when I open a regular explorer with WIN+E.

It is quite strange, because the problem disappears for "consecutive saves" (ie If I do a "save as" just little time after a previous one on the same app, it won't freeze at all most of the time)

I've also tried to hunt&kill processes to see if it would change anything, but so far I haven't found the culprit.

I believe I didn't have this issue after a fresh Windows install. Because I'm doing a lot of development, I highly suspect this might be related by some software that watch folder updates, but I have no idea how to track the problem. Also the fact is that only the application that asked to save the file freezes kinda puzzle me. Any advice on this ?

I don't believe the Hardware is relevant, as it happens on both my desktop and laptop. They both run Windows 8. My desktop is quite a powerful machine, with SSDs and an intel i7.

EDIT : running processes

EDIT : running services (I guess I bit of paint.net doesn't hurt...)

  • CPU is almost at 0 when this happens. I have 11GB RAM so memory isn't a problem either. I'll post a list of running processes though. Jan 15, 2015 at 18:07
  • Yes yes ! Also do you have some command that I could paste into powershell to get the list of running services? I tried net | out-file "c:\services.txt" but it lists only the names (translated into French :( ) of files. And posting screenshots would be tedious (long list) Jan 15, 2015 at 18:18
  • Yes this is what I had used to generate the file I linked in my post. However this doesn't give you the list of services running. Unless you can guess the services hosted by 'svchost' just by looking at its properties :P Jan 15, 2015 at 18:28
  • "pslist -s" downloaded for free from technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals may be more helpful.
    – K7AAY
    Jan 15, 2015 at 18:29

2 Answers 2


This exact behavoir can be caused when a drive/mapped share Windows expects to be there is acting wonky. I've had to deal with it when a forgotten flashdrive plugged into the back started dying. I was able to identify the drive by going to my computer and finding that explorer hanged if I tried to open that drive (the drive letter was shown but the label was missing). Removing the non-responding drive resolved the issue.

Copy/pasting from https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/313937 (it's for Office but I can confirm that it affects all modern style open/save dialogs)

  • When the computer is connected to one or more mapped network shares that are nonexistent or that are currently offline.
  • When one or more mapped drives are persistent, and the drive is in a domain that is not trusted.
  • When the mapped drive is located on a slow or a down-level computer. A down-level computer is when the operating system of the computer has an earlier version of Microsoft Windows than the computer that you are using).
  • When a mapped drive is connected across a Wide Area Network (WAN).
  • When a drive is an inaccessible removable drive.

Find the drive that isn't responding and either fix it or remove it.

  • Hmm unfortunately It's been a while, I have upgraded all my comps to WIndows 10 and I no longer have this issue. Mar 29, 2016 at 14:59

Ok so I found a solution from here:

Fix – Windows 10 Freeze Renaming – Saving Files and Folders

If you use lots of shared folders (NAS and network in general), Windows 10 quick access algorithm could create troubles.

Simply disable it to achieve again maximum response time from your system.

To change how Quick Access works, display the File Explorer ribbon in any folder, navigate to View, and then select Options and then Change folder and search options. The Folder Options window opens.

uncheck “Show frequently use folders in Quick access.”

uncheck “Show recently used folders in Quick access.”

press “Clear”

I made a GIF to show:


Make sure both boxes in Privacy are unticked.

  • Can you edit this one like you did the other one?
    – bertieb
    Mar 4, 2017 at 21:17
  • lol you make me regret answering the question. the whole reason I made the GIF since it was easier than just copying the text (well no personally, a picture is worth a 1000 words so a moving picture is 1000^2 :) )
    – Mark
    Mar 4, 2017 at 21:20
  • It's good that you included the gif, but some devices don't display animated gifs and other people may find it tricky to follow. Text is easy and quick to read.
    – bertieb
    Mar 4, 2017 at 21:44

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