In this article I’m going to explain the basic way to close a piece of software, app or program that is not responding or has frozen, using Task Manager. Images are from Windows 10 and do differ from previous versions, but they all have these particular features and functions. I’m writing this post in preparation for one on reopening programs using Task Manager, coming next week.
Why do I need to use Task Manager to close a program?
Sometimes, with the best will in the world. programs or apps freeze or stop working, and the little X in the top right-hand corner that you use to close it just will not work.
If this happens, you need to go to the central program which shows what is running on your computer to force the program to shut down. This is the Task Manager.
How do I open Task Manager?
You can use the Windows button or the search bar in Windows 10 to find Task Manager, but I and most people who use it use the keystroke combination control-alt-delete to bring it up. That means pressing and holding down the Control key, the Alt key and the Delete key at the same time.
You may then get a menu which offers you Task Manager.
Task Manager has a list of the open programs and also how much of the computer’s attention or memory they’re using up. It looks like this in Windows 10 when you open it
and you can End tasks from here, but then if you select More details you will see a list with more information (in older versions, you will get the more full list straight away and be able to click on CPU etc):
This shows you everything that’s open and how much memory etc. it’s using. Although there is a large amount of information here, we’re going to concentrate on closing a program that has got stuck and won’t let you close it in the normal way.
How do I close a frozen software application using Task Manager?
You can do this in two ways:
- Click on the program you wish to close and click the End task button:
2. Sometimes, the End task button will read Re-start but you just want to end it. If this happens, or as an alternative, right-click on the application you’re concerned about and then choose End task:
You can then click the X in the top right-hand side of Task Manager to close it.
In this article, I’ve explained how to use Task Manager to close a program, software application or app which has frozen and won’t allow you to close it in the standard way.