5 Ways To Kill Not Responding/Frozen Windows Apps

ARKMS who owns a Spanish blog suggested me an app for killing the frozen and not responding Windows apps easily. I thought I’d better compile all my inventory of tools with similar functions.

A program or software may stop responding due to several reasons including but not limited to hardware conflicts, lack of resources or bugs in the software itself. Generally the approach taken to kill/close the processes that are not responding is to go to task manager and “End Task” the frozen app. But if this happens frequently, then it’s better to try out one or all of the ways that I am mentioning here.

1- Kill

Kill is a little app written with AutoHotkeys which does the work as its name suggests. It can kill any process or application with only one click. If the application stops responding, just double click the Kill app and then click on the window that you want to terminate.


Kill (208.2 KiB, 11,147 hits)

2- xKill

xKill is a similar app to Kill but it’s more advanced in the sense that it can run in the system tray and has a shortcut to activate kill mode. So if an application is not responding, just press Ctrl – Alt – BackSpace. This will activate the kill mode and clicking on any window will terminate that process. To deactivate the kill mode without killing any app, just press Esc.


xKill (17.9 KiB, 7,671 hits)

3- Registry hack

Windows has an Auto End Task timer which means that after a specified time interval, the not responding applications will be terminated automatically. Setting this Auto End Task timer to 0 seconds will terminate the not responding apps instantaneously.

To alter the registry setting for this timer:

Go to Start –> Run –> regedit

Go to the following key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop

In the right hand pane, find the key called “WaitToKillAppTimeout”, double click it and set the time to wait for not responding applications to come back to normal. The time is in milliseconds. If you want to end the task immediately, give the value as 0 but this will not be wise.

4- Taskkill batch file/Command Line

There’s a Windows command called Taskkill which is used to terminate processes. Simply create a shortcut with the following command:

taskkill.exe /f /fi “status eq not responding”

You can also download this shortcut from the following location and use it from wherever you want.

Task Kill Shortcut (77.0 KiB, 4,686 hits)

5- Process Assassin

Process Assassin is a software utility that can terminate the not responding applications. If any application is not responding, just select it from the Process Assassin menu and terminate it. Process Assassin also includes a predefined set of famous applications that can be terminated easily.


Process Assassin 1.1 (314.2 KiB, 11,893 hits)