Windows 10 is a powerful operating system, equipped with various features and functionalities that improve the experience of users. However, at times, certain applications can cause your system to slow down or even crash. This is often the result of running too many programs simultaneously. In such a case, you will need to learn how to delete running programs on Windows 10 to free up system resources and improve your computer’s performance.
While Microsoft has provided different methods to delete running programs on Windows, it can be challenging for some users, especially those who are new to the operating system or relatively less tech-savvy. In this blog post, we will guide you through the step-by-step process of deleting running programs on Windows 10.
The Challenge of Deleting Running Programs on Windows 10
The challenge of deleting running programs on Windows 10 often occurs when a program you are looking to close is unresponsive or freezes – this can be frustrating, especially if you have important tasks to complete. Additionally, some programs – particularly malware – do not allow users to shut them down through the usual process.
Fortunately, Microsoft has provided reliable and easy-to-follow methods to help users delete running programs on Windows 10. By following these methods, you can free up system resources and improve your computer’s performance.
Things You Should Prepare for
Before we dive into the methods of deleting running programs on Windows 10, there are a few things you need to prepare for:
– Know which programs are running: it’s crucial to identify which programs are running before you decide to close them. To do this, you can open Task Manager by pressing “Ctrl + Shift + Esc” on your keyboard. This will show you all the running programs along with their resource usage.
– Have administrative access: you will need administrative access to your computer to close some programs. If you don’t have administrative rights, contact your IT department or system administrator.
– Back up important files: before you close any program, ensure that you have saved any important files and documents.
Method 1: Use Task Manager to Close Running Programs
One of the easiest and quickest methods of deleting running programs on Windows 10 is by using Task Manager. Follow the steps below:
1. Open Task Manager by pressing “Ctrl + Shift + Esc” on your keyboard.
2. In Task Manager, go to the Processes tab.
3. Look for the program you want to close and click on it once to highlight it.
4. Click on End Task.
5. A warning window will pop up, click on End Process to confirm.
– Easy to use.
– Provides a detailed list of running programs and their resource usage.
– Some programs may still run in the background.
– Can’t close programs that are unresponsive or in use.
Method 2: Use Command Prompt to Close Running Programs
Another popular method of deleting running programs on Windows 10 is by using Command Prompt. This method is useful when the Task Manager can’t close a program or when multiple programs need to be closed simultaneously. Follow the steps below:
1. Press the Windows key + R to open the Run command.
2. Type in "cmd" and press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to run Command Prompt in admin mode.
3. In the Command Prompt window, type the command “tasklist” and press Enter. This will show you a list of all the running programs.
4. Identify the program you want to close and note its process ID (PID), which is the number to the left of the program name.
5. Type the command “taskkill /f /pid [PID]” and press Enter. Replace [PID] with the process ID of the program you want to close.
– Can close multiple programs at once.
– Can close unresponsive programs.
– Requires technical knowledge.
– Can cause data loss if not used correctly.
Method 3: Use Control Panel to Uninstall Programs
If you want to delete a program permanently from your computer, you may need to uninstall it using the Control Panel. Follow the steps below:
1. Click on the Start button and go to Settings.
2. In Settings, go to Apps & features.
3. Look for the program you want to uninstall and click on it.
4. Click on Uninstall and follow the on-screen instructions.
– Can permanently delete a program from your computer.
– Easy to use.
– May leave behind residual files.
– Cannot close programs that are currently running.
Method 4: Use a Third-Party Task Manager
Apart from the Task Manager provided by Microsoft, there are dozens of third-party Task Manager software available online. These software offer additional features such as program optimization, memory optimization, and detailed process-monitoring. Follow the steps below:
1. Search online for third-party Task Manager software and download the appropriate one for your computer.
2. Install the software and follow the on-screen instructions.
3. Open the software and look for the program you want to close.
4. Follow the software’s instructions to close the program.
– Offers additional features.
– Easy to use.
– May not be free.
– May not be as secure as Microsoft’s Task Manager.
Why Can’t I Delete Running Programs on Windows 10?
1. The program is unresponsive: If a program is unresponsive, you may not be able to close it using the Task Manager or other methods.
2. The program is in use: Some programs are designed to run automatically in the background and can be difficult to close.
3. The program is malware: Some malware is designed to prevent users from closing them. In such cases, use an anti-malware software to remove the malware.
1. Reboot your PC: If a program is unresponsive or in use, rebooting your PC may unstick it and allow you to close it.
2. Use Task Manager: As outlined in the methods above, you can use Task Manager to close running programs.
3. Use Command Prompt: Command Prompt can be useful in closing unresponsive programs or those in use.
4. Use anti-malware software: If a program is malware, use anti-malware software to remove it.
– Regularly check running programs to identify any that are causing your system to slow down.
– Always have a backup of important files to prevent data loss.
– Uninstall any programs that you no longer use or need.
– Avoid downloading and installing suspicious software.
Q: Can I damage my computer by closing running programs?
A: No, closing running programs will not damage your computer. It’s a safe procedure that helps free up system resources and improve performance. However, ensure that you have saved any important files before closing programs.
Q: What happens if I delete a program that is required by another program?
A: Deleting a program that another program requires can cause the dependent program to malfunction or stop working altogether. Ensure that you know which programs are interconnected before you attempt to delete them.
Q: Can I delete a core system file by mistake while trying to close a program?
A: Yes, it’s possible to delete a core system file by mistake while trying to close a program. Always ensure that you know what you are doing, and you have administrative access to your computer.
Q: Can I recover a file that was closed when I shut down a running program?
A: No, once a file is closed, it cannot be recovered. Ensure that you have saved any important files before shutting down a program.
Q: Can I delete running programs on Windows 10 from safe mode?
A: Yes, you can use safe mode to delete running programs on Windows 10 as long as you have administrative access to your computer.
Deleting running programs on Windows 10 is an essential maintenance task that improves your computer’s performance and frees up system resources. By following the methods outlined in this blog post, you can easily close any program that is causing your system to slow down or stop working. Remember to always save important files before closing programs, and use administrative access to avoid any accidental deletes.