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Windows Explorer Crashing

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  • Windows Vista
Last response: in Windows Vista
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November 25, 2009 12:02:43 AM

A while back both my desktop and my laptop developed a strange issue that I STILL can't figure out.

So here's the basic symptom:
Explorer will crash just while going back and forth through folders or when right clicking things. This only happens however, AFTER I do anything that gets the GPU working like playing a game or watching video. Doesn't matter what it is, StepMania, Team Fortress 2, HD .mkv video played back through Zoom player, using the TV Tuner card in the laptop, etc. There's a high chance Explorer will crash but only while going back and forth through folders or when right clicking something. If I restart the computer, it will be fine until I run something that fires up the GPU.

Weird thing is, it started happening to them at the same time. It seems the problem is less prevalent in the laptop but it still occurs. I figured a reinstall of Windows would help so I reinstalled Vista on my desktop. Well, it seemed fine for a few days but just a few minutes ago it did it again. I had JUST installed Adobe Reader a few minutes prior though and I'm thinking of removing it and testing it but I doubt that's the cause.

It happens on both my desktop and laptop. They are pretty different aside from both having AMD CPUs and Vista Home Premium x64 :

Desktop:
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Mobo (nForce 590 SLI)
AMD Athlon X2 6000+ Windsor
4GB DDR2 800 Corsair XMS2 RAM
EVGA GeForce GTX 275 896MB
SoundBlaster X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Profess1onal
Vista Home Premium x64 SP2 (originally started occurring in SP1)

Laptop:
HP Pavilion dv7-1260US
AMD Turion X2 RM-74
4GB DDR2 800
ATI Radeon HD3200
Integrated IDT High Definition Audio
Vista Home Premium x64 SP1

At first I thought it was the video card cause my desktop started doing it right after I upgraded from an 8800GT to the GTX 275 but then my laptop started doing the same thing the next day.

Now I read somewhere that Vista Explorer crashes are often caused by third party shell extensions but when I removed a few things, it still didn't help.

Anyone know what's going on with my computers?This has been driving me up the wall for months now. Even a clean install of Vista didn't help.

Thanks for any help!

More about : windows explorer crashing

November 25, 2009 5:39:20 AM

Hmmm, well. It very well could be Adobe Reader. I uninstalled everything Adobe except Flash player and didn't even restart it. Explorer crashed a few more times but after a while it stopped crashing. I might try firing up something 3D and see if I can get it to crash again.
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December 4, 2009 3:10:15 PM

Nope, not adobe causing the problem it seems. It's still crashing. I'm seriously confused as to how this is happening on 2 computers and one of which has had a complete format and reinstall and is still doing it.
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December 4, 2009 9:51:35 PM

Look in the event viewer to see what the error is.

Also, check to see if there was a windows update pushed down on the recent formatted computer. If it's happening on all of them, it could be a windows update.
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December 16, 2009 2:45:38 AM

I'm having almost the exact same issue (but it happens at random any time) but I'm using Windows 7 (64bit). I tried a clean reinstall of the OS but no joy it still does it randomly. I could be browsing files or clicking empty recycle bin and Windows Explorer will crash. Once it does crash the only way to stop it from crashing again is to reboot and it will be fine for a little while. As far as I can tell all of my hardware is fine. Someone even suggested maybe its AVG's right click context menu so I switched to MSE (wanted to anyway) but even that didn't help.
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December 17, 2009 6:41:44 AM

Well I have avast! but again, mine's not triggered until after something stirs up the GPU but it's not always guaranteed to do anything. Sometimes, I've run a game or watched hours of anime, and explorer won't crash till an hour or 2 later but once it starts, it usually doesn't stop until a reboot. I wanna doubt it's avast! but I can't rule it out either. Still, it's just weird that something that fires up the GPU even the slightest is what triggers it and on 2 different machines with completely different GPU's no less (one dedicated nVidia, the other integrated ATI).

My roommate's laptop as well as my dad's laptop seem unaffected but then again, since I loaned my roommate my old XP desktop to play games on, almost nothing he does with the laptop gets the GPU going and my dad, well, it's my dad. Powepoint, Word, Firefox and Freecell are about the only things that thing ever runs nowadays. They both run on Vista Home Basic 32-bit and both have Intel CPU's and integrated GPU's though.

OH, and I looked up in the event viewer and after a while of searching, I found a record of the last crash. It's been a while since it's happened mostly cause Tales of Vesperia is the only game I've been playing and it's on the 360:

Log Name: Application
Source: Application Error
Date: 12/2/2009 9:28:03 PM
Event ID: 1000
Task Category: (100)
Level: Error
Keywords: Classic
User: N/A
Computer: NineHundred-PC
Description:
Faulting application Explorer.EXE, version 6.0.6002.18005, time stamp 0x49e02a1e, faulting module ntdll.dll, version 6.0.6002.18005, time stamp 0x49e0421d, exception code 0xc0000374, fault offset 0x00000000000aef37, process id 0x334, application start time 0x01ca7393049fbc51.

and another that happened right before it:

Log Name: Application
Source: Application Error
Date: 12/2/2009 9:28:03 PM
Event ID: 1000
Task Category: (100)
Level: Error
Keywords: Classic
User: N/A
Computer: NineHundred-PC
Description:
Faulting application Explorer.EXE, version 6.0.6002.18005, time stamp 0x49e02a1e, faulting module ntdll.dll, version 6.0.6002.18005, time stamp 0x49e0421d, exception code 0xc0000374, fault offset 0x00000000000aef37, process id 0x334, application start time 0x01ca7393049fbc51.

and for good measure, a third one:

Log Name: Application
Source: Application Error
Date: 12/1/2009 4:18:30 PM
Event ID: 1000
Task Category: (100)
Level: Error
Keywords: Classic
User: N/A
Computer: NineHundred-PC
Description:
Faulting application Explorer.EXE, version 6.0.6002.18005, time stamp 0x49e02a1e, faulting module ntdll.dll, version 6.0.6002.18005, time stamp 0x49e0421d, exception code 0xc0000374, fault offset 0x00000000000aef37, process id 0x8d8, application start time 0x01ca72c856eb782b.

and if you want more, I got PLENTY more.
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December 17, 2009 8:51:10 AM

Try testing your RAM
http://www.memtest.org/

and your hard drive
start-->run--> chkdsk /r

Were both problem PCs installed with the same windows disc?
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December 17, 2009 6:28:08 PM

Nope, one is an HP preinstall (SP1) and the other was a Pre-SP1 OEM disc. Both started doing right around the same time. And I doubt it's the RAM or Hard drives if both systems started doing it at the same time.
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December 17, 2009 9:01:09 PM

It's free, relatively quick, and worth a shot.
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December 18, 2009 12:11:28 PM

May I be so bold to suggest that you try to replace ntdll.dll, version 6.0.6002.18005 with another version of it.
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!