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Why do Windows programs stop responding

A variety of applications can cause a Windows program to stop working, freeze, or become unresponsive. For example, a lack of system resources, a conflict between the application and the computer's hardware, or a lack of software faults might cause Windows programs to stop responding.

Why do Windows programs stop responding

There are several measures you can do to try in order to fix the program that is not responding. Below, there are various steps of the troubleshooting method for fixing a non-responsive software. Each troubleshooting step should be reviewed and tried in order, because they build on each other.

End Task the program

Why do Windows programs stop responding

The first step in addressing the application not responding is to use the Ctrl+Alt+Del keys on your keyboard to open the Close Program or Task Manager window. After successfully opening the Task Manager window, choose the application that is not responding and click the End Task button to terminate it. If a new window displays, ensure that the application is being halted by clicking the End Task button once more.

Note: Sometimes, it's possible that the computer is deadlocked if it does not get a response by pressing Ctrl+Alt+Del. For more information, read What should I do if my computer freezes or locks up?

Note: Remember that when a program does not require a response, and you end this program, all work that has not been saved is lost.

If the application job has completed and no longer displays in the Task Manager, you can reopen the software to test if it works correctly. If you're still having issues, go to the next section below.

Restart the computer

If you close the program and reopen it, still, it is not responding; you should restart your computer system. Restarting the computer is one of the most basic troubleshooting solutions for most computer-related difficulties, and while it may appear to be a "fast cure," it frequently addresses numerous software problems.

Why do Windows programs stop responding

Open the program again when your computer has been restarted to see if the problem has been resolved or not. Then you are required to go to the next section below if the program is not responding again.

Check for and download program updates

Now, it's time to check for available patches or updates for the program on the developer's website if you restart the computer and the program stops responding or happens at random after restarting the system. They may be able to assist in resolving the problem. When you check for the updates or patches if they are available for the program, download and install them.

Why do Windows programs stop responding

If you find the program needs to update and patches, download and install them successfully. After that, restart your computer system to ensure that they are successfully applied to the software. Now, you are required to reopen the program and make sure it is working properly. If no updates or patches are available now, you are still facing a problem with the program, and it stops responding again; continue to the next section below.

Uninstall and reinstall the program

If you are having an issue only with a particular program and all other programs in your system are working properly, you need to uninstall the program having the issue. Restart the computer and reinstall the unwanted software after it has been successfully removed. Then, double-check to verify if the software is now operational.

Why do Windows programs stop responding

If you are facing a problem with more than one program, you can try uninstalling and reinstalling each of the affected programs. However, it's possible that the problem is not with the programs but with something else in Windows or with the computer hardware. Continue to the next section below if the problem still persists.

Virus and malware scans

Viruses and malware are the programs that can be caused programs to stop responding, and they can occur in the system for various reasons and cause problems with Windows programs. Ensure that your system has an installed antivirus program and is fully updated. Then, to see if your computer is compromised, conduct a virus and malware scan.

Also see: How to install an antivirus program on a computer

Why do Windows programs stop responding

We also recommend downloading and installing the free Malwarebytes application to perform an extra malware scan and remove malware on your computer system.

If you scan your computer and find any viruses or malware and your antivirus program has removed them, restart your computer and run the program again to see if it now functions properly. If you are still facing a problem with the program or it stops responding again, continue to the next section below.


If your computer is overheated, it can be caused to various 'not responding' issues.

Consider the following questions:

  • Is your computer as hot as the surface of the Sun?
  • Do you hear strange noises coming from your computer?
  • Do annoying freezes and unexpected shutdowns continue to occur?

If your answer is yes to any of the above questions, there are chances of heat-related issues to blame for stopping responding to your programs.

In this case, you can:

  1. Maintain a cool environment for your computer with the help of allowing air to move around it.
  2. Check your BIOS for error reports and open your computer to physically inspect your fans, which may need to be cleaned.

And don't worry if the above suggestions seem a little complicated; it's perfectly acceptable to seek out a reputable service shop and have your computer evaluated by a professional.

Restore Windows to an earlier date

You can attempt restoring Windows to a time when the problem was not present if the program has recently stopped responding. When you restore the Window, it can bring the program back to life and may also resolve any difficulties you are having with your computer system.

Continue to the next stage below if no restore points were available, or reinstalling Windows to a previous date did not fix the problem.

Too Many Processes Running

To be honest, Windows 10 is a fantastic multitasker operating system. Nonetheless, everything has its limits: if you running numerous programs at once can drain your operating system and lead it to become unresponsive.

In this condition, you should run only one program at a time in order to see if your 'Windows doesn't reply' problem is caused by your operating system spreading itself too thin.

Update the Operating System

Windows itself may require an update from time to time. You need to press Win + I to enter the settings, then click "Update & Security" to determine if your machine requires the update. Here you will find a list of any upgrades or bug fixes your computer requires.

After you have installed these updates, reboot your computer and try it again to see if Windows still freezes.

Contact the developer for support

If you have followed all the steps above, you are still facing the problems with programs 'not responding;' contact the program developer to see if there are any known program difficulties. The developer's support team can also have the solution to overcome program issues.

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